Sunday, 20 December 2015

Respecting the Hijab

“What you do, the way you think, makes you beautiful.” ― Scott Westerfeld,

The topic of hijab is controversial to some, sensitive to others and a completely ‘no-go‘ zone to a few. There also, of course, sisters who are willing to discuss the topic with an open mind.

First and foremost, I'm not judging. I'm just giving a friendly advice based on observation and experience. I, myself, am far from perfect so let us try together.

Some sisters may argue that they should not be judged merely on their appearances and that donning the hijab is a personal choice. They should not be forced to do it. If they choose not to cover their head, the matter should be between them and God.

Personally, to me, yes, they are right. It's their personal right to obey God or to disobey and only God should judge them but, that does not mean that covering of the awra is not compulsory.

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.

Surah An-Nur 24:31

Now for those who are already in hijab. Alhamdulillah. It may not be an easy feat but trust me, the rewards are to die for!

But, however, may I just humbly request that you re- examine the reason or purpose or intention of you wearing the hijab. If the intention and purpose is to cover the awra and obey God, then please look at the definition and boundaries of our awra.

Abu Dawud (32:4092) - The Apostle of Allah... said: "O Asma', when a woman reaches the age of menstruation, it does not suit her that she displays her parts of body except this and this, and he pointed to her face and hands"  This was narrated by Aisha.

This hadith shows that for a woman, the only parts of her body that are allowed to be uncovered are her face and hands. Even our feet must be covered. To expose our feet or our necks or our arms means to expose our awra eventhough our head may be covered.

The commandment to cover our awra came directly from God Almighty. To show respect to what had been commanded to us, we should follow the description of awra as told to us by our beloved Prophet pbuh. We must obey His rules on His terms not ours.

To defile, taint or tarnish the commandment by changing it to suit our whim and fancy is actually, to me, is akin to insulting the commandment. Let me give you an example, an employer gave specific instructions to the employee to perform a certain task. By not following the instructions or changing it without valid reasons would  amount to insubordination. Similarly between us and God. Any form of disobedience to Him is insubordination in the highest order.

If the intention is good, then we must be careful not to end up with an empty shell i.e.not reaping any rewards for deeds done  or worse still, incurring His wrath for failing to respect His Decree.

Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There are two types of the people of Hell that I have not seen yet: men with whips like the tails of cattle, with which they strike the people, and women who are clothed yet naked, walking with an enticing gait, with something on their heads that looks like the humps of camels, leaning to one side. They will never enter Paradise or even smell its fragrance, although its fragrance can be detected from such and such a distance.” (Narrated by Ahmad and by Muslim in al-Saheeh).

Respect the hijab. Take the trouble to learn about it. Ignorance is no excuse in this technology era where information is a the touch of a button.

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