15
Aug
11

Turn off that Stove!

If you’re in charge of cooking in your household, and it’s usually women around the world who are, then you can feel like most of your Ramadan is spent over a hot stove instead of on a prayer mat.

I was once complaining to a friend of mine about how so many Muslim women seem to miss the blessings of Ramadan because of the overemphasis on great food at Iftar time. While I attributed this to a lack of consideration for the needs of women, my friend shared an interesting story.

She was originally from Egypt, and she recounted how her mother and the women in her neighborhood actuallycompeted with each other in Ramadan over food. In other words, they vied for the title of “maker of the best Ka’k (cookies) this side of Alexandria.” And this was despite the fact that male family members and even the Imam were encouraging women to share in the blessings of the month through prayer and mosque participation.

This Ramadan, let’s remove our inner and outer obstacles to spiritual success.

At the inner level, let’s start by ditching any feelings of guilt, competition or jealousy we may have for other sisters. You know who I’m talking about: the ones who can whip up a five-course Iftar plus dinner faster than you can say “what should I make for supper tonight?”The ones who can hold a full-time job, ferry their kids to extra-curricular activities and still hold grand Iftar parties at their homes.

Now we’re ready to do something about the biggest outer obstacle to spiritual success every Ramadan: our families. We love them and yes, their demands for food high in fat, salt and sugar can be indulged once in a while in Ramadan. But doing this every Iftar seems to defeat the purpose of fasting in the first place. Remember, it’s about self-control, even after we’re allowed to eat.

Here is an eight-step plan to help you gain more time in Ramadan for spiritual success:

  1. Call a family meeting-today. We’ve got barely a week until Ramadan begins. Choose a day and time when everyone can be present.
  2. Serve a sample Iftar menu at the meeting (I’ll explain why in point 3)
  3. Start off the meeting with the food. Then once everyone is comfortable, explain very kindly that you will only be making this food five times this Ramadan: once a week and once when guests are invited over.
  4. When the news has sunk in, explain further to your family that you would like Ramadan to be a time for becoming closer to Allah. You cannot do this if you have to spend most of your time cooking and cleaning up after everyone. Be firm but polite.
  5. Discuss the Ramadan meal plan. Ask everyone to share what kind of dishes they would like to eat that are healthy.
  6. Once all the ideas are in, establish a cooking and cleaning schedule so that everyone pitches in. Explain that while you will still be doing the main cooking, other family members will have to help either with pre-Iftar arrangements (setting table, calling everyone, etc.) or post-Iftar ones (washing dishes/loading dishwasher, wiping counters, sweeping, etc.).
  7. Enforce the schedule by rewarding children. For younger kids, a chore chart with a sticker for each day of help offered could work, as well as a small toy or gift at the end of every successful two-week period. For older kids, you could promise to spend a whole day with them doing something they enjoy after Ramadan or extend a privilege they have (e.g. access to the car if they drive).
  8. For husbands, express your appreciation verbally by saying thank you and explaining how the extra help is a real spiritual boost.

If this plan is successfully implemented, you can extend it to the rest of the year, thereby gaining more time to focus on your spiritual needs. But even if you get more time on your prayer mat than over your stove just one month out of the year, the one where our good deeds count for more, it’ll be worth the effort.

So go ahead. Turn off that stove and call that meeting!

05
Apr
11

Personal Hygiene

Muslims enjoy the highest standard of personal hygiene of all the people in the world. In Islam, cleanliness and purification are not only requirements for the performance of worship, or when embracing Islam, but are part of a Muslim’s very faith. Allah (SWT) says in the Quran:

“…Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance and loves those who purify themselves (by taking a bath and cleaning and washing thoroughly their private parts, bodies, for their prayers etc.).” (Al Baqarah 2:222)

Cleanliness in Islam is of three kinds:

1. Purification from impurity (i.e. to attain purity or cleanliness, by taking a bath (ghusl) or performing ablution (wudu) in states in which a bath or ablution is necessary or desirable according to Islamic Law).

2. To cleanse one’s body, dress or place from an impurity of filth.

3. To remove the dirt or grime that collects in various parts of the body, such as cleaning the teeth and nostrils, the trimming of nails and the removing of armpit and pubic hair.

GHUSL (A COMPLETE BATH)

This is when all parts of the body are thoroughly washed. Ghusl is required of every Muslim after marital intercourse, after wet dreams, after child-birth, and after post-partum bleeding (40-days flow of blood, and final yellowish discharge has completely stopped), and each month after menstruation and final yellowish discharge has stopped.

WUDU (A SIMPLE ABLUTION)

This simple ablution is necessary before prayer in the following cases:

· After urinating or defecating
· If one breaks wind
· If one falls asleep lying down
· If one loses consciousness
· If one directly touches the genitals
· If one becomes excited, leading to a subsequent discharge

The above cases also nullify one’s ablution, requiring a fresh one. Allah (SWT) says in the Quran:

“O you who believe! When you intend to offer prayer, wash your faces and your hands (fore0arms) up to the elbows, rub (by passing wet hands over) your heads, and (wash) your feet up to ankles.  If you are in a state of Janaba (i.e. had sexual discharge), purify yourself (bathe your whole body)….” (Al-Ma’idah 5:6)

Narrated Abu Huraira (RA):

“Allah’s Apostle said, “The prayer of a person who does, Hadath (passes, urine, stool or wind) is not accepted till he performs (repeats) the ablution.” A person from Hadaramout asked Abu Huraira, “What is ‘Hadath’?” Abu Huraira replied, ” ‘Hadath’ means the passing of wind from the anus.”
(Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 4, Number 137)

Narrated ‘Abbas bin Tamim:

“My uncle asked Allah’s Apostle about a person who imagined to have passed wind during the prayer. Allah’ Apostle replied: ‘He should not leave his prayers unless he hears sound or smells something.’” (Sahih Al-Bukhari,Volume 1, Book 4, Number 139)

The superiority of ablution. And Al-Ghurr-ul-Muhajjalun (the parts of the body of the Muslims washed in ablution will shine on the Day of Resurrection and the angels will call them by that name) from the traces of ablution. Narrated Nu’aim Al-Mujmir:

Once I went up the roof of the mosque along with Abu Huraira (RA): He performed ablution and said, “I heard the Prophet (SAW) saying, ‘On the Day of Resurrection, my followers will be called Al-Ghurr-ul-Muhajjalun from the traces of ablution and whoever can increase the area of his radiance should do so (by performing ablution in the most perfect manner.’” (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol. 1, Hadith No. 138)

Narrated Uthman ibn Affan (RA):

“The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: ‘He who performed ablution well, his sins would come out from his body, even coming out from under his nails.’” (Sahih Muslim, Book 2, Number 0476)

TAYAMMUM (PURIFICATION WITHOUT WATER)

To put or strike lightly the hands over clean earth and then pass the palm of each on the back of the other, blow off the dust then pass them on the face. This is performed instead of ablution (Wudu) and Ghusl (in case of Janaba etc.). Allah (SWT) says in the Quran:

“…But if you are ill or on a journey or any of you comes from answering the call of nature, or you have been in contact with women (i.e. sexual intercourse) and you find no water, then perform Tayammum with clean earth and rub therewith your faces and hands. Allah does not want to place you in difficulty, but He wants to purify you, and to complete His Favor on you that you may be thankful.” (Al-Ma’idah 5:6)

To illustrate the importance of Muslims maintaining their high level of personal hygiene, the following points are specifically mentioned by the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) on attending the call of nature.

Narrated Aisha, Ummul Mu’minin (RA):

“The Prophet (SAW) used his right hand for getting water for ablution and taking food, and his left hand for his evacuation and for anything repugnant.” (Sunan Abu Dawud)

Narrated Jabir ibn Abdullah:

When the Prophet (SAW) felt the need of relieving himself, he went far off where no one could see him.” (Sunan Abu Dawud)

Narrated Abu Hurairah (RA):

“The Messenger of Allah (SAW) said: Be on your guard against two things which provoke cursing. They (the companions present there) said: Messenger of Allah, what are those things which provoke cursing? He said: Easing on the thoroughfares or under the shades (where they take shelter and rest). (Sahih Muslim)

25
Jan
11

Women in the Quran and Sunnah p2

In Islam a woman is a completely independent personality. She can make any contract or bequest in her own name. She is entitled to inherit in her position as mother, as wife, as sister and as daughter. She has perfect liberty to choose her husband. The pagan society of pre-Islamic Arabia had an irrational prejudice against their female children whom they used to bury alive. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) was totally opposed to this practice. He showed them that supporting their female children would act as a screen for them against the fire of Hell:

It is narrated by the Prophet’s wife, Ayshah, that a woman entered her house with two of her daughters. She asked for charity but Ayshah could not find anything except a date, which was given to her. The woman divided it between her two daughters and did not eat any herself. Then she got up and left. When the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) came to the house, Ayshah told him about what had happened and he declared that when the woman was brought to account (on the Day of Judgment) about her two daughters they would act as a screen for her from the fires of Hell.

The worst calamity for a woman is when her husband passes away and, as a widow, the responsibility of maintaining the children falls upon her. In the Eastern World, where a woman does not always go out to earn her living, the problems of widowhood are indescribable. The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) upheld the cause of widows. Most of his wives were widows. In an age when widows were rarely permitted to remarry, the Prophet encouraged his followers to marry them. He was always ready to help widows and exhorted his followers to do the same. Abu Hurayrah reported that the Prophet said: “One who makes efforts (to help) the widow or a poor person is like a Mujahid (warrior) in the path of Allah, or like one who stands up for prayers in the night and fasts in the day.”

Woman as mother commands great respect in Islam. The Noble Quran speaks of the rights of the mother in a number of verses. It enjoins Muslims to show respect to their mothers and serve them well even if they are still unbelievers. The Prophet states emphatically that the rights of the mother are paramount. Abu Hurayrah reported that a man came to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) and asked: “O Messenger of Allah, who is the person who has the greatest right on me with regards to kindness and attention?” He replied, “Your mother.” “Then who?” He replied, “Your mother.” “Then who?” He replied, “Your mother.” “Then who?” He replied, “Your father.”

In another tradition, the Prophet advised a believer not to join the war against the Quraish in defense of Islam, but to look after his mother, saying that his service to his mother would be a cause of his salvation. Mu’awiyah, the son of Jahimah, reported that Jahimah came to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and said, “Messenger of Allah! I want to join the fighting (in the path of Allah) and I have come to seek your advice.” He said, “Then remain in your mother’s service, because Paradise is under her feet.”

The Prophet’s followers accepted his teachings and brought about a revolution in their social attitude towards women. They no longer considered women as mere chattels, but as an integral part of society. For the first time women were given the right to have a share in inheritance. In the new social climate, women rediscovered themselves and became highly active members of society rendering useful service during the wars which the pagan Arabs forced on the emerging Muslim Ummah. They carried provisions for the soldiers, nursed them, and even fought alongside them if it was necessary. It became a common sight to see women helping their husbands in the fields, carrying on trade and business independently, and going out of their homes to satisfy their needs.

Ayshah reported that Saudah bint Zam’ah went out one night. ‘Umar saw her and recognized her and said, “By God, O Saudah, why do you not hide yourself from us?” She went back to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and told him about it while he was having supper in her room, and he said, “It is permitted by Allah for you to go out for your needs.” The predominant idea in the teachings of Islam with regard to men and women is that a husband and wife should be full-fledged partners in making their home a happy and prosperous place, that they should be loyal and faithful to one another, and genuinely interested in each other’s welfare and the welfare of their children. A woman is expected to exercise a humanizing influence over her husband and to soften the sternness inherent in his nature. A man is enjoined to educate the women in his care so that they cultivate the qualities in which they, by their very nature, excel.

These aspects were much emphasized by the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). He exhorted men to marry women of piety and women to be faithful to their husbands and kind to their children. He said:

“Among my followers the best of men are those who are best to their wives, and the best of women are those who are best to their husbands. To each of such women is set down a reward equivalent to the reward of a thousand martyrs. Among my followers, again, the best of women are those who assist their husbands in their work, and love them dearly for everything, save what is a transgression of Allah’s laws.”

Once Mu’awiyah asked the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), “What are the rights that a wife has over her husband?” The Prophet replied, “Feed her when you take your food, give her clothes to wear when you wear clothes, refrain from giving her a slap on the face or abusing her, and do not separate from your wife, except within the house.” Once a woman came to the Prophet with a complaint against her husband. He told her: “There is no woman who removes something to replace it in its proper place, with a view to tidying her husband’s house, but that Allah sets it down as a virtue for her. Nor is there a man who walks with his wife hand-in-hand, but that Allah sets it down as a virtue for him; and if he puts his arm round her shoulder in love, his virtue is increased tenfold.” Once he was heard praising the women of the tribe of Quraish, “…because they are the kindest to their children while they are infants and because they keep a careful watch over the belongings of their husbands.”

The Shari’ah regards women as the spiritual and intellectual equals of men. The main distinction it makes between them is in the physical realm based on the equitable principle of fair division of labor. It allots the more strenuous work to the man and makes him responsible for the maintenance of the family. It allots the work of managing the home and the upbringing and training of children to the woman, work which has the greatest importance in the task of building a healthy and prosperous society.

It is a fact, however, that sound administration within the domestic field is impossible without a unified policy. For this reason the Shari’ah requires a man, as head of the family, to consult with his family and then to have the final say in decisions concerning it. In doing so he must not abuse his prerogative to cause any injury to his wife. Any transgression of this principle involves for him the risk of losing the favor of Allah, because his wife is not his subordinate but she is, to use the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), ‘the queen of her house’, and this is the position a true believer is expected to give his wife. In contrast to these enlightened teachings of Islam in respect of women, Western talk of women’s liberation or emancipation is actually a disguised form of exploitation of her body, deprivation of her honor, and degradation of her soul!

20
Jan
11

Women in the Quran and Sunnah

by Prof. ‘Abdur Rahman I. Doi

In Islam there is absolutely no difference between men and women as far as their relationship to Allah is concerned, as both are promised the same reward for good conduct and the same punishment for evil conduct. The Quran says:

“And for women are rights over men similar to those of men over women.” [Noble Quran 2:228]

The Quran, in addressing the believers, often uses the expression, ‘believing men and women’ to emphasize the equality of men and women in regard to their respective duties, rights, virtues and merits. It says:

“For Muslim men and women, for believing men and women, for devout men and women, for true men and women, for men and women who are patient and constant, for men and women who humble themselves, for men and women who give in charity, for men and women who fast, for men and women who guard their chastity, and for men and women who engage much in Allah’s praise, for them has Allah prepared forgiveness and great reward.” [Noble Quran 33:35]

This clearly contradicts the assertion of the Christian Fathers that women do not possess souls and that they will exist as sexless beings in the next life. The Quran says that women have souls in exactly the same way as men and will enter Paradise if they do good:

“Enter into Paradise, you and your wives, with delight.” [Noble Quran 43:70]

“Who so does that which is right, and believes, whether male or female, him or her will We quicken to happy life.” [Noble Quran 16:97]

The Quran admonishes those men who oppress or ill-treat women:

“O you who believe! You are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should you treat them with harshness, that you may take away part of the dowry you have given them – except when they have become guilty of open lewdness. On the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If you take a dislike to them, it may be that you dislike something and Allah will bring about through it a great deal of good.” [Noble Quran 4:19]

Considering the fact that before the advent of Islam the pagan Arabs used to bury their female children alive, make women dance naked in the vicinity of the Ka’bah during their annual fairs, and treat women as mere chattels and objects of sexual pleasure possessing no rights or position whatsoever, these teachings of the Noble Quran were revolutionary. Unlike other religions, which regarded women as being possessed of inherent sin and wickedness and men as being possessed of inherent virtue and nobility, Islam regards men and women as being of the same essence created from a single soul. The Quran declares:

“O mankind! Reverence your Guardian-Lord, who created you from a single person, created, of like nature, his mate, and from this pair scattered (like seeds) countless men and women. Reverence Allah, through Whom you demand your mutual (rights), and reverence the wombs (that bore you); for Allah ever watches over you.” [Noble Quran 4:1]

The Prophet of Islam (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Women are the twin halves of men.” The Quran emphasizes the essential unity of men and women in a most beautiful simile:

“They (your wives) are your garment and you are a garment for them.” [Noble Quran 2:187]

Just as a garment hides our nakedness, so do husband and wife, by entering into the relationship of marriage, secure each other’s chastity. The garment gives comfort to the body; so does the husband find comfort in his wife’s company and she in his. “The garment is the grace, the beauty, the embellishment of the body, so too are wives to their husbands as their husbands are to them.” Islam does not consider woman “an instrument of the Devil”, but rather the Quran calls her Muhsana – a fortress against Satan because a good woman, by marrying a man, helps him keep to the path of rectitude in his life. It is for this reason that marriage was considered by the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) as a most virtuous act. He said: “When a man marries, he has completed one half of his religion.” He enjoined matrimony on Muslims by saying: “Marriage is part of my way and whoever keeps away from my way is not from me (i.e. is not my follower).” The Quran has given the raison d’être of marriage in the following words:

“And among His signs is this, that He has created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may dwell in tranquility with them; and He has put love and mercy between you. Verily in that are signs for those who reflect.” [Noble Quran 30:21]

The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) was full of praise for virtuous and chaste women. He said:

“The world and all things in the world are precious but the most precious thing in the world is a virtuous woman. He once told the future khalifah, ‘Umar: “Shall I not inform you about the best treasure a man can hoard? It is a virtuous wife who pleases him whenever he looks towards her, and who guards herself when he is absent from her.”

On other occasions the Prophet said:

“The best property a man can have is a remembering tongue (about Allah), a grateful heart and a believing wife who helps him in his faith.” And again: “The world, the whole of it, is a commodity and the best of the commodities of the world is a virtuous wife.”

Before the advent of Islam women were often treated worse than animals. The Prophet wanted to put a stop to all cruelties to women. He preached kindness towards them. He told the Muslims: “Fear Allah in respect of women.” And: “The best of you are they who behave best to their wives.” And: “A Muslim must not hate his wife, and if he be displeased with one bad quality in her, let him be pleased with one that is good.” And: “The more civil and kind a Muslim is to his wife, the more perfect in faith he is.”

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was most emphatic in enjoining upon Muslims to be kind to their women when he delivered his famous khutbah on the Mount of Mercy at Arafat in the presence of one hundred and twenty-four thousand of his Companions who had gathered there for the Hajj al-Wada (Farewell Pilgrimage). In it he ordered those present, and through them all those Muslims who were to come later, to be respectful and kind towards women. He said:

“Fear Allah regarding women. Verily you have married them with the trust of Allah, and made their bodies lawful with the word of Allah. You have got (rights) over them, and they have got (rights) over you in respect of their food and clothing according to your means.”

In Islam a woman is a completely independent personality. She can make any contract or bequest in her own name. She is entitled to inherit in her position as mother, as wife, as sister and as daughter. She has perfect liberty to choose her husband. The pagan society of pre-Islamic Arabia had an irrational prejudice against their female children whom they used to bury alive. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) was totally opposed to this practice. He showed them that supporting their female children would act as a screen for them against the fire of Hell:

It is narrated by the Prophet’s wife, Ayshah, that a woman entered her house with two of her daughters. She asked for charity but Ayshah could not find anything except a date, which was given to her. The woman divided it between her two daughters and did not eat any herself. Then she got up and left. When the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) came to the house, Ayshah told him about what had happened and he declared that when the woman was brought to account (on the Day of Judgment) about her two daughters they would act as a screen for her from the fires of Hell.

The worst calamity for a woman is when her husband passes away and, as a widow, the responsibility of maintaining the children falls upon her. In the Eastern World, where a woman does not always go out to earn her living, the problems of widowhood are indescribable. The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) upheld the cause of widows. Most of his wives were widows. In an age when widows were rarely permitted to remarry, the Prophet encouraged his followers to marry them. He was always ready to help widows and exhorted his followers to do the same. Abu Hurayrah reported that the Prophet said: “One who makes efforts (to help) the widow or a poor person is like a Mujahid (warrior) in the path of Allah, or like one who stands up for prayers in the night and fasts in the day.”

Woman as mother commands great respect in Islam. The Noble Quran speaks of the rights of the mother in a number of verses. It enjoins Muslims to show respect to their mothers and serve them well even if they are still unbelievers. The Prophet states emphatically that the rights of the mother are paramount. Abu Hurayrah reported that a man came to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) and asked: “O Messenger of Allah, who is the person who has the greatest right on me with regards to kindness and attention?” He replied, “Your mother.” “Then who?” He replied, “Your mother.” “Then who?” He replied, “Your mother.” “Then who?” He replied, “Your father.”

In another tradition, the Prophet advised a believer not to join the war against the Quraish in defense of Islam, but to look after his mother, saying that his service to his mother would be a cause of his salvation. Mu’awiyah, the son of Jahimah, reported that Jahimah came to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and said, “Messenger of Allah! I want to join the fighting (in the path of Allah) and I have come to seek your advice.” He said, “Then remain in your mother’s service, because Paradise is under her feet.”

The Prophet’s followers accepted his teachings and brought about a revolution in their social attitude towards women. They no longer considered women as mere chattels, but as an integral part of society. For the first time women were given the right to have a share in inheritance. In the new social climate, women rediscovered themselves and became highly active members of society rendering useful service during the wars which the pagan Arabs forced on the emerging Muslim Ummah. They carried provisions for the soldiers, nursed them, and even fought alongside them if it was necessary. It became a common sight to see women helping their husbands in the fields, carrying on trade and business independently, and going out of their homes to satisfy their needs.

Ayshah reported that Saudah bint Zam’ah went out one night. ‘Umar saw her and recognized her and said, “By God, O Saudah, why do you not hide yourself from us?” She went back to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and told him about it while he was having supper in her room, and he said, “It is permitted by Allah for you to go out for your needs.” The predominant idea in the teachings of Islam with regard to men and women is that a husband and wife should be full-fledged partners in making their home a happy and prosperous place, that they should be loyal and faithful to one another, and genuinely interested in each other’s welfare and the welfare of their children. A woman is expected to exercise a humanizing influence over her husband and to soften the sternness inherent in his nature. A man is enjoined to educate the women in his care so that they cultivate the qualities in which they, by their very nature, excel.

These aspects were much emphasized by the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). He exhorted men to marry women of piety and women to be faithful to their husbands and kind to their children. He said:

“Among my followers the best of men are those who are best to their wives, and the best of women are those who are best to their husbands. To each of such women is set down a reward equivalent to the reward of a thousand martyrs. Among my followers, again, the best of women are those who assist their husbands in their work, and love them dearly for everything, save what is a transgression of Allah’s laws.”

Once Mu’awiyah asked the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), “What are the rights that a wife has over her husband?” The Prophet replied, “Feed her when you take your food, give her clothes to wear when you wear clothes, refrain from giving her a slap on the face or abusing her, and do not separate from your wife, except within the house.” Once a woman came to the Prophet with a complaint against her husband. He told her: “There is no woman who removes something to replace it in its proper place, with a view to tidying her husband’s house, but that Allah sets it down as a virtue for her. Nor is there a man who walks with his wife hand-in-hand, but that Allah sets it down as a virtue for him; and if he puts his arm round her shoulder in love, his virtue is increased tenfold.” Once he was heard praising the women of the tribe of Quraish, “…because they are the kindest to their children while they are infants and because they keep a careful watch over the belongings of their husbands.”

The Shari’ah regards women as the spiritual and intellectual equals of men. The main distinction it makes between them is in the physical realm based on the equitable principle of fair division of labor. It allots the more strenuous work to the man and makes him responsible for the maintenance of the family. It allots the work of managing the home and the upbringing and training of children to the woman, work which has the greatest importance in the task of building a healthy and prosperous society.

It is a fact, however, that sound administration within the domestic field is impossible without a unified policy. For this reason the Shari’ah requires a man, as head of the family, to consult with his family and then to have the final say in decisions concerning it. In doing so he must not abuse his prerogative to cause any injury to his wife. Any transgression of this principle involves for him the risk of losing the favor of Allah, because his wife is not his subordinate but she is, to use the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), ‘the queen of her house’, and this is the position a true believer is expected to give his wife. In contrast to these enlightened teachings of Islam in respect of women, Western talk of women’s liberation or emancipation is actually a disguised form of exploitation of her body, deprivation of her honor, and degradation of her soul!

16
Jan
11

Women in Islam

 

Women in Islam

At a time when the rest of the world, from Greece and Rome to India and China, considered women as no better than children or even slaves, with no rights whatsoever, Islam acknowledged women’s equality with men in a great many respects. The Quran states:

“And among His signs is this: that He created mates for you from yourselves that you may find rest and peace of mind in them, and He ordained between you love and mercy. Certainly, herein indeed are signs for people who reflect.” [Noble Quran 30:21]

Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) said:

“The most perfect in faith amongst believers is he who is best in manners and kindest to his wife.” [Abu Dawud]

Muslims believe that Adam and Eve were created from the same soul. Both were equally guilty of their sin and fall from grace, and Allah forgave both. Many women in Islam have had high status; consider the fact that the first person to convert to Islam was Khadijah, the wife of Muhammad, whom he both loved and respected. His favorite wife after Khadijah’s death, Ayshah, became renowned as a scholar and one of the greatest sources of Hadith literature. Many of the female Companions accomplished great deeds and achieved fame, and throughout Islamic history there have been famous and influential scholars and jurists.

We might also mention that while many in the West criticize Islam with regard to the treatment of women, in fact a number of Muslim countries have had women rulers and presidents. To name a few: Turkey; Bangladesh and Pakistan.

With regard to education, both women and men have the same rights and obligations. This is clear in Prophet Muhammad’s saying:

“Seeking knowledge is mandatory for every believer.” [Ibn Majah]

This implies men and women.

A woman is to be treated as God has endowed her, with rights, such as to be treated as an individual, with the right to own and dispose of her own property and earnings, enter into contracts, even after marriage. She has the right to be educated and to work outside the home if she so chooses. She has the right to inherit from her father, mother, and husband. A very interesting point to note is that in Islam, unlike any other religion, a woman can be an imam, a leader of communal prayer, for a group of women.

A Muslim woman also has obligations. All the laws and regulations pertaining to prayer, fasting, charity, pilgrimage, doing good deeds, etc., apply to women, albeit with minor differences having mainly to do with female physiology.

Before marriage, a woman has the right to choose her husband. Islamic law is very strict regarding the necessity of having the woman’s consent for marriage. The groom gives a marriage dowry to the bride for her own personal use. She keeps her own family name, rather than taking her husband’s. As a wife, a woman has the right to be supported by her husband even if she is already rich. She also has the right to seek divorce and custody of young children. She does not return the dowry, except in a few unusual situations.

Despite the fact that in many places and times Muslim communities have not always adhered to all or even many of the foregoing in practice, the ideal has been there for 1,400 years, while virtually all other major civilizations did not begin to address these issues or change their negative attitudes until the 19th and 20th centuries, and there are still many contemporary civilizations which have yet to do so.

12
Jan
11

12 Basic Rights of Muslim Women

What are women’s rights in Islam?

Courtesy of Islamic.Org

In a truely Islamic society women have the following rights in Islam:

1. The right and duty to obtain education.

2. The right to have their own independent property.

3. The right to work to earn money if they need it or want it.

4. Equality of reward for equal deeds.

5. The right to express their opinion and be heard.

6. The right to provisions from the husband for all her needs and more.

7. The right to negotiate marriage terms of her choice.

8. The right to obtain divorce from her husband, even on the grounds that she simply can’t stand him. (pls note that God deeply frowns upon divorce as a solution unless there is hardly any other alternative but it does not mean that men have more right to divorce their wives than women do.)

9. The right to keep all her own money (she is not responsible to maintain any relations).

10. The right to get sexual satisfaction from her husband.

11. custody of their children after divorce.

12. to refuse any marriage that does not please them

and more…

07
Jan
11

Getting Fit for Life

Who made resolutions this year to keep fit and work. It can be difficult for the best of us, but if your trying to juggle kids, a job, and other duties its extremely difficult to make the time.

I have found this simple routine to be quite ‘doable’ and inshallah you will find it beneficial too!

If you’re between 18 and 45 years of age and have an average level of fitness, this workout―designed by fitness expert Lana Titus―is for you.

Monday: Cardio

  • Do 30 minutes of cardio, whether it’s biking, walking, hiking, or running stairs. Try doing consecutive intervals—1 minute of walking, 1 minute of jogging, 1 minute of sprinting—to maximize your results in minimal time.

Tuesday: Arms

  • Bicep curls, 10 reps 
  • Triceps kick-backs, 10 reps 
  • Shoulder presses, 10 reps 
  • Repeat this circuit two more times. 

Wednesday: Abs and Obliques

  • Crunches, 20 reps 
  • Bicycle crunches, 20 reps 
  • Oblique crunches, 20 reps 
  • Plank, hold for 30 seconds 
  • Side plank, hold for 30 seconds on each side 

Thursday: Lower Body

  • Walking lunges, 10 reps on each leg 
  • Wall squat, hold for 30 seconds and build up to 1 minute as you feel more comfortable 
  • Calf raises, 30 raises with both legs, then 15 on each leg 
  • Jump squat, 10 reps 
  • Repeat this circuit two more times. 

Friday: Cardio

  • 30 minutes of cardio of your choice See Monday for more details.

Saturday and Sunday

  • Rest. 

Our bodies are a gift and responsibilty from Allah swt… how do YOU keep yourself fit and healthy?

Post your ideas and comments on our Perfect Muslim Wife Facebook Page and invite your friends to join!




Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 8,355 other followers


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 8,355 other followers