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Islam, Women and Feminism ( 14 May 2014, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Status of Woman in Islam


By Zainab Gasib

13 May, 2014

Islam treat woman as a human being equal to man in all rights and obligations. The Holy Qur’an said: “Whoever does righteousness, whether male or female, while he is a believer — We will surely cause him to live a good life, and We will surely give them their reward (in the Hereafter) according to the best of what they used to do.” (Surah Al Nahl: 97).

Almighty Allah has not put any conditions between man and woman for treating them equal in getting His reward. He has neither allowed man to monopolize woman nor will double reward for man while denying it to woman. Here the criterion for God’s reward is belief and righteous deeds. There is neither any immunity for man nor any sanctity for woman. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said that women are sisters of men. However, some extremists see women as slaves who shall be subjugated to men, and that they have no rights to education or job or any role in the public or private affairs of society. They create hue and cry when woman goes out of her house. They do not guarantee her right to a decent living even within the house.

There are many women who have been deprived of the prime period of their life by husbands who pronounce divorce after spending some time with them after marriage. By this, they force these women to shoulder the responsibility of taking care of themselves and their children. In case she approached a court and got a favourable verdict for money to take care of children, the man would find thousands of ways to escape from fulfilling his obligations. If a man tries to find excuses not to fulfill his obligations, no other man would come out in protest against him or even to criticize him. On the other hand, if this happens on the part of a woman when she goes out to a market or factory or hospital or company, men would come out in large numbers to criticize her.

There are orphans, widows and divorcees among these women. Some of them are destitute while others are rich, and there are women whose requirements may not be fulfilled by householders.

All these women are being targeted by the so called ‘respected’ religious people. Are they not ashamed of betraying and fighting against these women?  What they want from these women? It is supposed that they want these women to be locked up inside their house, waiting for their death from poverty and starvation and then accompanying their dead bodies to cemetery, chanting Allah-o-Akbar (God is Greatest). They are also active in reacting to all issues concerning with women up to the point that woman is an issue for all those who do not have an issue to raise with and those who do not deserve any dignity in the society.

Some of these people blast Saudi women if they see anyone of them engaged in cleaning the glass frontage of the shop where she works even if she does this after wearing decent dress. These people put a special hashtag for this among those supporting, opposing, encouraging and denouncing it. They forget the fact that women during the time of the Prophet (pbuh) used to sit in front of their products to sell them and sweep the area where they sat in the Souq (market). None of the men those days tried to possess what they had earned because they were keen to practice the teachings of Islam that engaging in decent work is the right of both men and women. This sublime principle was instrumental in transforming the Souq into a gathering place of a civilized society where men respected women. The religion of Islam also made mosque a school where men and women can learn Islamic lessons, and made life lively and meaningful with the active involvement of both men and women.

But we are living in a new world created by pedants who are dedicated to chasing women with a conviction that they are getting more closer to Allah with this holy war (Jihad) by holding woman accountable for this and that. These people are really doing injustice to women.