Respect for Women wearing Hijab at Olympics

Extract of an article from the Guardian by Naomi Alderman

The Greeks, as we all know, used to compete in the original Olympic games stark naked and smothered in olive oil. That’s no longer the fashion – because we have different cultural ideas about what parts of the body are suitable for public display – and, in fact, some women have taken the trend for Olympic modesty one stage further. This year, several women, including Egyptian fencer Shaimaa El Gammal and Bahraini sprinter Rakia Al Gassra, will be competing wearing the hijab.

I suppose that as a good liberal feminist I ought to be appalled by this, seeing it as a symbol of patriarchal oppression. In fact, I find I rather admire these women.

I am appalled by the fact that some countries, including Saudi Arabia, have sent male-only teams to the games. But for these women, combining their religious beliefs with their athletic ambitions, I have nothing but respect.

A lot of rubbish is talked about the hijab. Since France banned girls from wearing them in schools in 2004, there has been a steady stream of media stories and comment suggesting that Britain should do the same. Feminist friends tell me that the headscarves are a symbol of female subjugation, a way to deal with male lust by forcing women to cover up, and that as such, they should not be tolerated in a gender-equal society. The women who wear them, they say, have been pressured into it by their communities.

Well, yes and no. We all wear the kind of clothes we wear partly because of social pressure – and our own culture still says, for example, that it is more acceptable, and less sexual, for men to walk down the street topless than it is for women. Many patriarchal religions do indeed hold highly disturbing views about women, which should be challenged, but we should confront those ideas via education and debate, not by forcing young women to reveal parts of their bodies they would rather keep covered. If women say that they want to wear a headscarf, I’m afraid we have to take them at their word. What could be more anti-feminist than telling women that they don’t really know what they think?

Bare Minimum

The Bare Minimum

 

by Anas Patel

“If we ponder upon our lives we will find that we do not suffice with only the bare necessities required to make ends meet. We toil and sweat to attain the luxuries as well.

From our house to our car, everything has to be up to date and well ornamented. Despite our worldly existence being transitory we strive to attain everything of the best quality.
Yet when it comes to deen, we suffice with the minimum required and do only those actions which are necessary and compulsory.

We completely discard and abandon those desirable actions which help beautify and fortify a person’s Iman and spirituality.”

Characteristics of a Pious Wife

A pious woman’s priority is to seek the pleasure of Allah. She tries acquiring the qualities of a good wife by following the examples of the Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) and obeying what is commanded in the Book of Allah. Complete obedience and adherence to the Sunnah of the Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) and Quran is the best of a woman’s qualities.

Examples:
A woman is married for four reasons: for her wealth, for her fame, for her beauty and for her religion. So marry one for her religion and you will win. [Bukhari & Muslim]

Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient (to Allah and to their husbands) and guard in their husband’s absence what Allah orders them to guard (e.g. their honor, husbands property, etc) [4:34]

An-Nasaii narrated that the Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) was asked “Who are the best of women?” He replied, “The one who pleases him (her husband) if he looks at her, obeys him if he orders (her) and does not subject her honor or money to what he dislikes.”

Ibn Hibban narrated that the Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) said, “If a woman prayed five prayers, fasted in Ramadan, protected her honor and obeyed her husband; then she will be told (on the Day of Judgment): enter Paradise from any of its(eight) doors.”

Reflect on:
If a woman harms (in any way) her husband, then his wife in Paradise tells her: “Do not harm him, May Allah fight you, he is only staying temporarily with you. Soon he will come to us.” [Ahmad & At-Tirmithi]

If a man calls his wife to bed and she refuses till he slept while angry, then the Angels will curse her till the morning. [Muslim]

Allah does not look to the woman who does not appreciate her husband while she cannot stand his departing her. [An-Nasaii].

A woman does not fast while her husband is present without his permission, except in Ramadan. [Al-Bukhari & Muslim]

Any woman who asks her husband for divorce for no reason will not smell the fragrance of Paradise. [Sahih Al-Jamii]

The Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) said, “If I were to order anyone to bow down to other than Allah, I would order the wife to do so for her husband. By the One who owns the soul of Muhammad,if a wife does not fulfill her obligations towards her husband, then she will not have fulfilled her obligations towards Allah.” [Ahmad]

by Al-Islaah Publications

Characteristics of a Pious Husband

On the Day of Judgment :Allah will ask men if they fulfilled their obligations towards their families. They who fear Allah will do their best to direct the way his wife and children live by educating himself and his family to living according to the Sunnah of the Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) and the Holy Qur’an, the final word of Allah.

The Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) said, “The best of you is the best one to his family.” [Al-Tabarani]

To share food with her, to provide her with (decent) clothes as he provides himself, to refrain from smacking her, and not ignoring her but in the house. [Ahmad]

One should not hate his believer wife. If he dislikes some of her attitudes, he would (surely) like others (attitudes). [Muslim]

Woman was created from a bent rib and will not be made straight for you on one way (that you like). If you want to enjoy her, you enjoy her while she is still bent. If you want to straighten her up, you will break her. Breaking her is divorcing her. [Al-Bukhari & Muslim]

Do (volunteer) fasting (some days) and do not fast (in other days), pray at night (some nights) and sleep (in other nights). Your body has a right on you (to rest), your eye has a right on you (to sleep), and your wife has a right on you. [Al-Bukhari & Muslim]

Fear Allah in (treating) women. [Muslim]

Be advised to treat women righteously. [Al-Bukhari & Muslim]

And live with them honorably. If you dislike them, it may be that you dislike a thing that Allah brings through it a great deal of good. [4:19]

The Prophet (Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) said,”A Dinar (a currency) that you spend on your family, a Dinar that you spend on a poor person and a Dinar that you spend in the sake of Allah. The one that carries the most reward is the one that you spend on your family.” [Muslim]

The Prophet(Sallallahu alaiyhi wassallam) said to Saaid ibn Abi Waqqas,”Know that no charity that you give whether small or large, for the sake of Allah, but you will be rewarded for it, even the bite (of food) that you put in your wife’s mouth.” [Bukhari & Muslim]

by Al-Islaah Publications

On the Way to Attending Study Sessions

If you attend a study-session, behave only like someone who wishes to increase his knowledge and to win greater recompense from God. Do not behave like someone who is content with what he has, who is looking for some fault to criticise or a curious detail to hawk around. This would be the behaviour of vile men who never succeed in their studies.

If you come to it with good intentions, you will always obtain the best results. Otherwise, to stay at home would be less tiring for your body, more worthy of your moral conduct and more salutary for your religious life.

Extract from Al-Akhlâq wa’l-Siyar (Morals and Behaviour) By Ibn Hazm al-Andalusi

10 Ways of Developing Love for Allah

Adapted from Shaykh Ibn Qayyim’s (rah) Madarij-us-Saalikeen

Shaykh Ibn al-Qayyim (rah) says: “The reason which cause mahabbah (love) of Allaah to develop, are ten:

First: Reciting the Qur’aan, reflecting and understanding its meaning and its intent.

Second: Drawing closer to Allaah – the Most High – through optional deeds, after fulfilling the obligatory duties.

Third: Being continuous in the dhikr (remembrance) of Allaah, with the tongue, the heart and the limbs – under all circumstances. The more continuant the dhikr, the more muhabbah develops and intensifies.

Fourth: Giving precedence to what Allaah loves over personal loves, when being overcome by desires.

Fifth: Contemplating and deliberating over the Names and Attributes of Allaah.

Sixth: Recognizing and remembering the favors and bounties of Allaah – both manifest and hidden.

Seventh: To be humble and submissive before Allaah – and this is the greatest matter.

Eighth: To be in seclusion reciting the Qur’aan, during that time in which Allaah descends to the lowest heaven (which is the last third of every night), finishing this recitation with seeking Allaah’s forgiveness and repenting to Him.

Ninth: To sit in the gatherings of the true and sincere lovers of Allaah, reaping the fruits of their speech, and not to speak except if there is benefit in it and that you know that such talk will increase you in goodness and that it will benefit others as well.

Tenth: To stay clear of all those causes which distances the heart from Allaah – the Mighty and Majestic.

So these are the ten reasons which cause the person to develop true love for Allaah and to reach the rank of al-muhabbah, by which he reaches his Beloved.

taken from The Truth

Prophet Ibrahim (2)

As you may recall, most of the people at the time of Ibrahim (alayhis salam) were idol worshippers. There were very few people who heeded the words of Ibrahim (alayhis salam). One of the people who did follow in the way of Allah was his wife, Sarah. She and Ibrahim (alayhis salam) had been married for many years but did not have any children. As they became more elderly, it seemed apparent that they would never have a family. Sarah therefore gave Ibrahim (alayhis salam) her slavewoman, Hajra, as a wife, in the hopes that she would be able to bear a child for him. Ibrahim (alayhis salam) prayed for a righteous son and his prayer was answered. To him and Hajra was born the son Ismail (alayhis salam).

Ismail (alayhis salam) grew up strong in the belief of Allah. When he had become old enough to have become helpful, Ibrahim (alayhis salam) saw in a vision from Allah that he was to sacrifice his son. You can imagine how heavy-hearted he was at the thought of giving up that long-awaited son. But he never thought to go against the command of Allah. He went to his son and told him of the vision and asked him what he thought of it. Now Ismail (alayhis salam), although very young, never hesitated. If it was Allah’s will, he said, he would go along with it.

Ibrahim (alayhis salam) and Ismail (alayhis salam) prepared for the sacrifice and just as Ibrahim (alayhis salam) was about to perform it, Allah intervened. Allah provided a ram for sacrifice in place of Ismail (alayhis salam), for Ibrahim (alayhis salam) and Ismail (alayhis salam) had passed the test of faith which Allah had set for them.

Some time later, the angels who were being sent to Lut (alayhis salam) stopped at Ibrahim’s (alayhis salam) home. When he saw the two strangers, he roasted a calf in order to entertain them. When he saw that they did not eat, he mistrusted and feared them. But they told him not to be afraid. Sarah was there and she laughed when they told her she would have a son. She couldn’t believe it. She was an old woman and her husband an old man. They told her not to wonder at Allah’s decree, for he can do all things.

Ibrahim (alayhis salam), too, couldn’t believe his ears when they told him that he would father another son endowed with wisdom. He asked the messengers how they could say such a thing when he was such an old man. But they assured him that they were telling the truth.

Just as the angels had foretold, a son was born to Sarah and Ibrahim (alayhis salam). He was named Ishaaq (alayhis salam) and he later became the father of Yaqub (alayhis salam). It is from Ishaaq (alayhis salam) that the children of Israel trace their roots.

It is from Ismail (alayhis salam), Ibrahim’s (alayhis salam) first-born son, that the people of Arabia trace their lineage. Thus can two peoples, the Jews and the Arabs, trace their beginnings back to a single ancestor, Ibrahim (alayhis salam), the father of Ismail (alayhis salam) and Ishaaq (alayhis salam).

You can read about Ibrahim (alayhis salam) and his sons in the following surat of the Qur’an 11:69-76, 15:51-56, and 37: 99-111.