Well, ahem, ahem, adhavadhu indha ooru janangalukku naan sollikradhu ennanna, Madam ippallam romba busy, romba busy, romba busy!!! Sanikkizhamaila mattum thaan blog ezhudha thonudhu, aanaa appa kooda Madam veetu velaile romba busy romba busy romba busy!! (pinnae, vetti vetti vetti vetti nu ethanai thadavai eludhuradhaam?)
Okay, coming to the title.. I have been longing to write about being a Muslim woman, I postponed it for several reasons, and now that I feel I am ‘fit’ enough to talk on this, here I go..
From being ‘oppressed’ by ‘forcing’ us wear a ‘burdha/purdha/burqa/whatever” to being treated like slaves (as in Islam, a man is allowed to marry 4 women at a time) is what a Muslim woman is portrayed in the society!! The proud contributors are of course the media, waiting to find Burqa clad women in the West facing problems due to racism and conducting “public debates” here as to whether it is needed or not , then the movies (Tamil cinema le Tamil muslims a kaamikura azhagirukkae…”Arae Allah, nimablki nikkuraan, nambalki vaanguraan, thengale kurmavekkalam, aanaa bomb vekkalamo” types) and of course, some of our very own community members who lack the understanding of Islam, treating women no different than what is being portrayed outside.
Now let me make a confession here. It is Islam, and the rights that we are given which motivated me to study hard, harder infact, and to work!! For those of you who are a little aware of the Islamic laws on women, no wonder you are surprised. I’m here to tell the world how liberated a Muslim woman is, and how much of blessings that are showered upon her in Islam in my perspective.
1. Muslim women are free to pursue their education, just like their male counterpart, provided there are conditions amicable for her to protect her dignity and practise the religion (of course free mingling of men and women are not permitted in Islam
2. Muslim women, by the Islamic law, have rights to inheritance of property.
3. No matter how much she earns, it is the duty of the husband to look after the family, and she need not spend even a single paisa for her family.
4. In a marriage, it is the woman who has to get “mahr” from the groom, and not vice versa which is being commonly practised.
5. She has the right to divorce a man, just like how he has the right for the same towards her.
6. The Hijaab is truly a blessing for a woman, one of the means through which she can protect her modesty and something that truly liberates her.
And there are many more to add. The point number 3, is what made me decide about what I should be doing, the moment I came to know of it. Don’t mistake me for being a miser and unwillling spend on the family, but I understood that in a family where both the members earn, the woman’s earnings is always a surplus and can spend them on doing good things to the society. Well, I don’t know how many will believe this, but this is truly what motivated me to aim high and work (God knows the best).
Then comes the Hijaab. Trust me , it is one amazing thing that I have ever come across. There are many who ask me wont I feel hot during summer, or irritating and one even said that I looked older for my age because of my Hijaab. Who cares? When I walk on the road with my Hijaab on, people give way for me with respect, I really dont have to worry if there is someone on the raods looking elsewhere, and above all, I am looked upon only for what is in my heads!! And the best part is, many of my non muslim friends too (mostly South Indians) dress up in a modest manner, with a salwar and duppatta pinned, the only difference being the headcover. We seek perfection, so why to leave the head alone? So we all know the preciousness of covering up, and we enjoy being this way.
But I clearly don’t understand why and how people think that ‘liberation’ for a woman means reducing the length of her dress. We see songs of Indian movies being shot in some of the coldest places on earth, like the snow clad mountains. Do we see the hero dancing with his shorts with a sleevless shirt or a tube top? But what do we see the heroine wearing????? Do you think she would have loved such a ‘liberty’? Isn’t it being forced on her? Isn’t that oppression? How do men, under normal cirumstances dress up, say for an occasion, to the office, for shopping? He wears a full sleeved shirt and a pant to the office, and in some cases, we see him wearing blazers, i.e., he is fully covered. Meaning, it is only his brains that are required and not his skin to do any work? Why is this whole thing opposite for a woman??? Why on earth should she show her skin to the world, which is an extremely precious thing? We never see any male stars showing their bodies in a public function. Remember, women are insulted and their intellectual capabilities are undermined when they are forced to believe that this is what liberation is.
Now that I know why cover and understand my rights and responsibilities, I feel great, Alhamdhulillah (praise be to the Almighty), blessed, and respected being a Muslim woman!!!