Women in IslamWomen in IslamByMaram Mohammad Hasan
11--IntroductionIntroductionAlmost all Moslimsocieties havedeviated from theideals of Islam withrespect to the statusof women , alsosome people mixIslam with traditions,therefore thebehavior of somenominal followers ofIslam is misleading.This presentation isdedicated to declarewhat is stated in Quraanabout women incomparison with thevision of the followers ofboth Judaism andChristianity , as we -asmuslims- believe that theoriginal books of bothrelegions are distorted ,and of course we dobelieve that all religionsstem from one source.
In Judaism and Christianity ,when god rebuked Adamfor what he did ,Adam putsall his blame on Hawwaa .He said:"The woman you put herewith me , .....she gave mesome fruit from the treeand I ate it".2-Eves Fault?God created both Adam and Hawwaa (Eve) . All religionsagree for that , but after that , we have some difference:
In Quraan we find anotherconcept , in several places , forexample: اية الرعراف23 7:23 They said, "Our Lord, we havewronged ourselves, and ifYoudo not forgive us and havemercy upon us, we will surelybe among the losers."
The Quraan , contrary to the bible ,The Quraan , contrary to the bible ,places equal blame on both Adamplaces equal blame on both Adamand Eve for their mistake , there isand Eve for their mistake , there isnot even the slightest hint that Evenot even the slightest hint that Evetempted Adam to eat from the treetempted Adam to eat from the treeor ate before him , so in Quraan ,or ate before him , so in Quraan ,Eve is not a deceiverEve is not a deceiver..
In the Old Testamentwe find:"While I was still searchingbut not finding , I found oneupright man among athousand , but not oneupright woman among themall".)Ecclesiastes 7:28(3-Eves LegacyThe image of Eve as temptress in the written Bible has resultedin an extremely negative impact on women thoughout theJudio-Christian tradition . All women were believed to haveinherited from their mother , Eve , her guilt.
While we findin Quraan:And Allah presents an example of those who believed: thewife of Pharaoh, when she said, "My Lord, build for me nearYou a house in Paradise and save me from Pharaoh and hisdeeds and save me from the wrongdoing people.“And [the example of] Mary, the daughter of Imran, whoguarded her chastity, so We blew into [her garment]through Our angel, and she believed in the words of herLord and His scriptures and was of the devoutly obedient.اية التحريم12,13
The Quraan never says that noThe Quraan never says that noupright woman have ever existed ,upright woman have ever existed ,to the contrary , the Quraan hasto the contrary , the Quraan hasinstructed all the believers , womaninstructed all the believers , womanas well as men , to follow theas well as men , to follow theexample of those ideal women suchexample of those ideal women suchas Virgin Mary and the Pharaohsas Virgin Mary and the Pharaohswifewife..
Catholic Bible states:"The birth of a daughter is aloss"4-Shameful Daughters?In the written Bible , a daughter is considered a painful burden.
While the Quraanmakes no distinctionbetween boys andgirls .The Quraanconsiders the birth of afemale as a gift and ablessing from God , thesame as the birth of amale .The Quraan evenmentions the gift of afemale birth first: To Allah belongs the dominion of theheavens and the earth; He createswhat he wills. He gives to whom Hewills female [children], and He gives towhom He wills males.اية الشورى49
We find in the NewTestament:"Women should remainsilent in the churches , theyare not allowed to speak ,but must be in submissionas the law says . If they wantto inquire about something ,they should ask their ownhusbands at home".5-Female EducationThe Bible and the Quraan have extremely different attitudes tofemale who tries to learn her religion.
In Quraan , one short storynarrated sums up the position ofthe woman in Islam concisely:When Khawla , the Muslimwoman , came to the prophet toplead her case in (Al Ziharaccident ) she kept arguing withthe prophet until her plea wasaccepted , the devine verdictabolished this pagan custom , andthe chapter revealed on theprophet was named after her " AlMujadala " means " the womanwho is arguing" . Certainly has Allah heard the speech ofthe one who argues with you, [OMuhammad], concerning her husbandand directs her complaint to Allah .AndAllah hears your dialogue; indeed,Allahis Hearing and Seeing.اية المجادلة1How can a woman grow intellectually if she is obliged tobe in a state of full submission?
So , the woman in the QuranicSo , the woman in the Quranicconception has the right to argueconception has the right to argueand no one has the right to instructand no one has the right to instructher to keep silent or to ask herher to keep silent or to ask herhusband instead of asking the jurist ,husband instead of asking the jurist ,and this considered to be the wayand this considered to be the wayfor learningfor learning..
The Rabbis justify whywomen cannot bearwitness by citingGenesis 18:9-16where it is stated that Sara(may Allah be pleased withher ) , wife of Abraham(peace and blessing may beupon him ) had lied.6-Bearing WitnessIt is true that the Quraan has instructed the believers dealing infinancial transaction to get two male witnesses or one male andtwo females ,on the other hand , women were not allowed tobear witness in early Jewish society
In contrast tothis accusation ,the Quraanpraises Sara: They said, "Are you amazed at thedecree of Allah ? May the mercy ofAllah and His blessings be upon you,people of the house. Indeed, He isPraiseworthy and Honorable."اية هود73It should be noted here that a similar story mentioned inQuraan without any hint of any lies by Sara (AP( .
The Talmud describes thefinancial situation of a wife asfollows:"How can a woman haveanything whatever it hersbelong to her husband ? ,what is his is his and whatis hers is also his".7-Wifes PropertyThe three religions share a belief in the importance of marriageand family life , and agree on the leadership of the husbandover his family . Nonetheless , differences do appear amongJudio-Christianity and Islam about the limits of this leadership.
But Islam , since the seventhcentury , has granted marriedwoman the independentpersonality .The gift from thegroom to the bride isconsidered her property andneither the groom nor herfamily have a control over it,the Quraan states: And give the women [uponmarriage] their [bridal] giftsgraciously. But if they give upwillingly to you anything of it,then take it in satisfaction andease.اية النساء4
Also , the woman is not a property to beAlso , the woman is not a property to beinherited , as stated in Quraaninherited , as stated in Quraan::O you who have believed, it is not lawful for you to inheritwomen by compulsion. And do not make difficulties for them inorder to take [back] part of what you gave them unless theycommit a clear immorality. And live with them in kindness. For ifyou dislike them - perhaps you dislike a thing and Allah makestherein much good.اية النساء19
to the contrary , the OldTestament frequently attest tothe legality of polygamy:King Solomon-whose said tobe a prophet in Quraan- saidto have 700 wives , also kingDawood-whose also aprophet- is said to have toomany wives (Samuel 5:13(8-PolygamyPolygamy is a very ancient practice found in many humansocieties .The Bible did not condemn polygamy.
Father Eugene Hillman in hisinsightful book said:"Nowhere in the NewTestament is there any explicitcommandment that marriageshould be monogamous orany explicit commandmentforbidden polygamy".What about polygamy in the new testament?
In the Quraan we find thisverse: And if you fear that you will notdeal justly with the orphan girls,then marry those that please youof [other] women, two or threeor four. But if you fear that youwill not be just, then [marryonly] one or those your righthand possesses.That is moresuitable that you may not incline[to injustice]. اية النساء3
The Quraan too , allowed polygamy , butThe Quraan too , allowed polygamy , but notnotwithout restrictionswithout restrictions . The Quraan limits the. The Quraan limits themaximum number of wives tomaximum number of wives to fourfour under the strictunder the strictcondition of treating the wives equally and justlycondition of treating the wives equally and justly..It should be understood that the Quraan isIt should be understood that the Quraan is notnotexhortingexhorting the believers to practice polygamy or thatthe believers to practice polygamy or thatpolygamy is considered as an ideal , in other words ,polygamy is considered as an ideal , in other words ,the Quraanthe Quraan allowedallowed polygamy inpolygamy in certaincertain conditionsconditions..
99--ConclusionsConclusionsDo Muslim women in the Muslimworld today receive this nobletreatment as what is stated aboutthem in Islam?
The fact is that there are two directions in muslimThe fact is that there are two directions in muslimsociety :society :The first is too restrictive and tradition oriented .The first is too restrictive and tradition oriented .The second is more liberal and western oriented ,The second is more liberal and western oriented ,both of them deprive women of many of herboth of them deprive women of many of herrights granted by Islam whether it is by deprivingrights granted by Islam whether it is by deprivingof going to school or by losing her name byof going to school or by losing her name bymarriagemarriage..
Furthermore ,Furthermore , the problem is that Muslim societythe problem is that Muslim societytoday is far from Islam in many aspects of life ,today is far from Islam in many aspects of life ,therefore , reforming the look to the womentherefore , reforming the look to the womenshould be joined with reforming of the Muslimshould be joined with reforming of the Muslimsociety .society .IslamIslam should be viewed by us not as ashould be viewed by us not as a rivalrival totoJudio-Christianity but as aJudio-Christianity but as a perfectionperfection of the divineof the divinemessage . If we have this point of view , we willmessage . If we have this point of view , we willcorrect any misconception about Islamic womencorrect any misconception about Islamic womenconsideration and we will develop womensconsideration and we will develop womensposition in Islamic societyposition in Islamic society..
At last , the Quraan states this vision about allAt last , the Quraan states this vision about allhumans whom are created by Allahhumans whom are created by Allah::Sahih InternationalO mankind, indeed We have created you from male and femaleand made you peoples and tribes that you may know oneanother. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah isthe most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing andAcquainted.اية الحجرات13
1010--SourcesSourcesWomen in IslamWomen in IslamByDr. Sherif Abdel AzimDr. Sherif Abdel Azim