Answering some questions on World Hijab Day

Published: February 1, 2013

Hijab has encouraged me to reflect deeply about myself as a women, my identity in the greater Islamic sisterhood and as a mother. PHOTO: REUTERS

Every February 1st, on World Hijab Day, there is a new barrage of outlooks and arguments on the subject.

Having been a hijabi for a long time now, I am very satisfied with my decision. However, I do enjoy reading articles on this controversial topic. A lot of these articles are motivating and inspiring, but a majority,  reflect on the confused state of mind of the writer.

Over the years, answering the question,

‘Why do you wear hijab?’

And also reading different outlooks on the subject has brought me to some clear-cut rebuttals that surround the hijab. Read on to find out!

Hijab is a matter of choice

This banner is usually raised by the 21st century feminists who fail to acknowledge the important association of hijab with religion rather than with women’s liberation.

Personally, I feel that my decision to wear hijab was reinforced by the earlier, important choice of being a Muslim. Hence, I have never viewed hijab as a ‘choice,’ but rather as an integral part of the religion that I have already chosen to follow.

You may feel differently but I have never felt comfortable discussing hijab as a choice, similar to a subject in college or a lawn dress at a shop.

Furthermore, I strongly feel that hijab does not only contribute to the respect and protection of women, but helps preserve the sanctity of marriage by reducing temptation for either party to stray.

Covering the hair, wearing loose clothing or large chadors will not keep the lechers away

Whether it will or will not keep the lechers away is not the issue under discussion here. If loose clothing and covering of the head is cited as the most suitable and acceptable dress code for a Muslim woman, then that should be a reason enough to do hijab.

Baseless arguments such as, ‘since it will not keep the lechers away, it isn’t any use,’ only attempt to justify an act that people inwardly know is not correct.

For example, similar acts of justification have sprouted all over the Muslim world for dealing with interest based transactions.

Modesty or sharam/haya is in the eyes

This is perhaps the most ludicrous and aggravating of all statements, also known as justification, I have come across for not wearing a hijab.

If you do not wear hijab, please have the guts to say that you don’t because you don’t like it or because you are not comfortable with it.

However, please do not insult the intelligence of those who do by saying idiotic things such as ‘modesty is in the eyes.’

What does that even mean?

The correct idiom is ‘Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.’ Not modesty.

Modesty is the last thing in the eyes of a beholder who beholds a young girl in skinny jeans, a tight T-shirt, layered hair and smoky eyes walking the isles of a Clifton supermarket

This unreasonable argument cannot be disputed even for the sake of an argument!

Hijabis are forced by their husbands/families to cover their heads

This may be the case with a lot of people but definitely not all of them.

Certainly not myself; In fact, I was the one to convince my better half into this decision.

Additionally, I felt more protected and respected in my new attire as opposed to being an open invitation for lewd comments, stares and, I am sure, behind-the-back discussions on my dress, hair, figure and so on.

Just suppose, if half the women cover their heads voluntarily and the other half are forced by their families, I am sure it will be the end of the nothing-left-to-the-imagination, enticing, half naked, open female ‘invitations’ hanging on bill boards around our cities and splashed on our television screens.

Hijabis are mindless, poorly educated, suppressed women without an opinion or the ability to function or compete in the 21st century

This is one of the most common attitudes I have faced being a hijabi.

It usually takes an effort to address the other party at hand – the non-hijabis.

Yes we too have a mind, a life and the ability to function, similar to them.

The stereotyping of hijabis has been gradually nurtured by the Western media and a collective global society that is keen to exploit women as sexual objects and commercial products. Our society being devoted followers of the West, follow in close tow.

Let’s be honest that it is only this ‘ankhon kee thandak‘ (soothing to the eyes) provided by fashionably dressed women that makes ratings soar.

If not, we would certainly see more head covered, loose dress attired, less make-uped women in ads, dramas, as newscasters and talk show hosts.

Harsh words, I apologise- hardly any to fully express the reality of the situation. My arguments are many but my space is limited.

Needless to say, hijab has encouraged me to reflect deeply about myself as a women, my identity in the greater Islamic sisterhood, my strength as an individual in a world transfixed by appearances and above all, as a mother raising her children in a tough time.

Again, apologies for any hard words but hey, we have as much of a right to speak our mind as the non-hijabis.

Right?

Read more by Aalia here

aalia.suleman

Aalia Suleman

A freelance writer and poet who is keenly interested in the status of women in 21st century Pakistan. Her writing also zones in on Pakistan's new social and political status on a redefined global chessboard. She has a masters degree in English Literature and blogs and invites debates at 'Socio-politically Pakistani'.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • http://www.zaidzamanhamid.wordpress.com Zaid Hamid

    Good to know that women in Hijab are not molested.Recommend

  • Pessimist

    Yawn…..Recommend

  • http://www.facebook.com/DiscoMaulvi Aly Balagamwala (@DiscoMaulvi)

    Great article. May Allah (SWT) bless you for your decision and guide those who struggle with this decision. May He also bless men & women to lower their gazes as Hijab does half the job, hayaa does the other half – and as you pointed out both stem directly as a result of Imaan.Recommend

  • http://twitter.com/freedomofheresy FreedomOfHeresy

    Whether it be Hijaab, Niqab, Burqa or Chadar, they all epitomize masculine control. FULLSTOPRecommend

  • ss

    oh you forgot to mention one point, some ppl think women wear hijab to hide bald head or their ugliness :-/Recommend

  • Zaidi

    good to know your views on it but i definitely see no reason to justify wearing hijab its like justifying why you dont wear a particular color of clothes or do not like to eat a certain flavour. its a matter of choice next time if anybody asks you why you wear hijab just tell them u dont feel comfortable in tight clothing or simply because islam says so. also if a woman wants to expose its personal choice why do we have to judge a person maybe they are comfortable that way. then again there are people who litter the facebook newsfeed with hijab is beautiful and im beautiful because i wear hijab slogans and shares that is pretty stupid you must be confident about stuff you do and there’s hardly any need to convince people to adopt your lifestyle islam has asked us to preach through our actions and before you judge me to be a liberal or anything i myself cover my head but dont need the feel to explain to anyone why i do it Recommend

  • rad

    very logical..!! so now da option for the enlightened is…whether to go with the flow or follow the relegion…peace!Recommend

  • Parvez

    Couldn’t you have just said that religion dictates that women’s dress code should be modest, which in my opinion a nice shalwar-kameez with a beautiful dupatta also does the job.
    At least you’re honest by saying that you’re wearing your religion on your sleeve. Its not the dress code that bothers people, its the mindset that goes with it that is problematic and I am talking generally.Recommend

  • sameera rashid

    No need to give justification if you wear hijab. And let me tell you one thing: ultimately, it’s a choice that you have made in the light of religious guidance. Any religion, and, Islam too, favorably decrees a lot of practices; but we do not accept all of them and consciously ,or ,evenly, unconsciously pick up a few ,and ,in some cases many practices. But in the end we are all making a choice.
    And, I also disagree that hijab reinforces modesty. I can say from experience that modesty lies in one’s demeanor and worldview and not simply in a piece of cloth covering hair. Modesty is strength of character, so you might stray with hijab or might not stray without hijab.
    But all the best to you. Recommend

  • Stranger

    I dont mind interacting with a hibaji woman. My only condition is that her face should be shown and not just her eyes.I would like to see the entire face of the person I am talking to.Recommend

  • Zeeshan Humayun

    Its funny how some people criticize women for wearing Hijab & at the same-time say people are free to wear whatever they want.Recommend

  • http://lonepkliberal.wordpress.com Loneliberal PK

    The hijabi pity-party is getting a little redundant now.

    If you want a fair discussion, let’s have an article by a woman who wears Western dresses telling us about the way she is treated in Pakistan (and not just in the few elite neighborhoods).Recommend

  • Sad Woman

    I used to wear a hijab, but I was so badly discriminated against that I was forced to switch to mini-skirts. Because that is the socially acceptable dress in Pakistan.

    (sobs uncontrollably)Recommend

  • Nobody

    “Furthermore, I strongly feel that hijab does not only contribute to the respect and protection of women, but helps preserve the sanctity of marriage by reducing temptation for either party to stray.”

    You had me til you said that. I respect your right to wear whatever you want, and I, too, dislike the silly stereotypes that people direct towards hijabis, just as I dislike the assumptions and/or stereotypes directed at women not wearing hijab or wearing tight jeans in a place like Pakistan.

    I’m tired of the notion that wearing a piece of fabric protects you from anything. .If what you said was really true, women would be safe and respected in Muslim societies, and they are neither.

    And the comment about forced hijab, I’ll avoid saying anything because I’m going to assume I misunderstood you (there’s a chance I did). But if I’m right, forcing hijab doesn’t make it real hijab and completely misses the point. Hijab is supposed to be from the inside out, not the outside in.

    I don’t wear hijab. And not because I think it’s a choice as far as religion goes, but because I feel it’s a choice to follow or not and I’m neither uber-modest from a religious point of view, nor provacative (I prefer a happy middle). You seem to respect choice just fine at the start of your blog, then went in a slightly different direction, not entirely withholding your mild disdain for girls wearing tight clothes, or “half naked. (unless I misunderstood that, if so, apologies)” You express your annoyance at people stereotyping you because your scarf (and rightly so), but in the same regard, non hiijabis don’t appreciate it either.

    From a personal standpoint, I’m all for a bit of class and that applies to both men and women. And as much as we like to think we can see past people’s clothes, it’s human nature to initially ONLY see clothes. It’s the first thing you see on a person, and it creates an impression. Now that may change with time if you get to know the person, but it may not. Unfortunately that means a fraction of people will ALWAYS see hijabis as oppressed, no matter what one says, same way women (or even men) who wear more revealing clothing will be perceived as something they may or may not be. I struggled with it myself to be totally honest. I don’t like the concept and I think it’s an easy form of oppression, BUT, I’ve learned to alter that perception as I am someone who hates being solely judged by what I’m wearing, and I owe others the same respect. Unfortunately, not everyone feels that way. Recommend

  • BlackJack

    This banner is usually raised by the 21st century feminists who fail to acknowledge the important association of hijab with religion rather than with women’s liberation.
    Excellent contrast.Recommend

  • http://www.submaza.com Sana Zahra

    Its an excellent write up! good work by the author.Recommend

  • Sane

    What is this term ‘Hijabi’? Don’t create new terminologies like Islamic Bomb or Muslim Terrorist. Muslim world already has enough.Recommend

  • Patrick

    You do realize that the hijab is not some ancient form of Muslim dress code? This is just another form of male oppression of women. Another form of taking culpability of thought and actions away from the guilty and blaming the innocent. “If you show hair, it is your fault for being immodest if someone does something or thinks something sexual about you.” Would you support a nation “no hijab” day, where people who always wear one stop and for at least 24 hours they go out in “western garb”? The difference is, in most countries where you don’t have to wear a hijab, if you do, you aren’t stones or raped. Meanwhile in the countries where you have to wear one…if you don’t the government itself will punish you or the “religious leaders” will. Id rather live in a “western” culture if it means I don’t get killed and beheaded for not dressing acting or worshiping “correctly” Recommend

  • I am a Khan

    Great Article Sister…Good to see that good muslimas still exist in Pakistan. Be prepared for the hostile comments of the Islamophobes…ET comments section seems to be very popular with them!Recommend

  • I am a Khan

    @Sameera Rashid

    I partly agree with your comment. It is unfortunate that not all Hijabis are modest, particularly some of the Hijabis in the western countries.But that is because they have probably been told by family to wear the Hijab. Such ladies have defamed the Hijab. However any muslima who wears the Hijab out of her own choice is probably going to be a good muslim. I agree that non Hijab wearing ladies can be good muslims also, but they are not following an important command of the All Mighty. I feel that Hijab is the 9th or 10th Step in being a complete muslim. Tauheed, Salaat, Zakaat, are the basic steps. So my advice to muslimas is try praying 5 times a day regularly, and you will automatically cover yourself up 5 times a day and then ultimately cover up all the time! No offence to anyone, just a humble advice. Recommend

  • gp65

    Please feel free to wear what you want. If it’s a hijab that makes you comfortable, so be it. DO not however make unsubstantiated claims that this protects the sanctity of the marriage unless you are prepared to provide some data that backs this up.

    Also do know that those that do not wear hijaab are not necessarily half naked as you seemed to imply. You have a right to choose what you wear, so do others. If you don’t ike being judged please extend the same courtesy to others as well.Recommend

  • Insaan

    Author: Modesty is the last thing in the eyes of a beholder who beholds a……….

    Well in many Muslim countries where all Muslim women wear burqa, women get raped, groped, sexually harassed. Other then religious reason, why women wear Hijab. What percentage of Muslim women wear Hijab and loose clothes in a country like Pakistan.

    Personally I don’t think wearing clothes can influence hormones of the thoughts of men or women. Majority of Muslim women in USA don’t do Hijab and no one bothers them.

    My question to author is in what way, Muslim women who wear Hijab are better then ones who don’t wear Hijab?Recommend

  • Ayazanchor

    Due to islamic law yes it is the beauty of woman…..Recommend

  • Ammar

    Fun fact of the day: Almost all hookers on the streets of Karachi, don a hijab.

    Just saying =PRecommend

  • Insaan

    Author: “I felt more protected and respected in my new attire as opposed to being an open invitation for lewd comments, stares and, I am sure, behind-the-back discussions on my dress, hair, figure and so on.”

    There are countries where all women are required to wear burqa. Muslim women get lewd comments, women get groped, raped, sexually harassed, touched in those very Islamic countries. In USA most Muslim women don’t wear hijab and no one bothers them. It seems it is Muslim men that are the problem. Do your male relatives lower their gaze when they see a woman or they check her out?.

    It is the lashes not the burqa that makes the difference. Incest and rape is common in burqa wearing countries. Even boys are raped in countries like Saudi arabia. Do you think boys get raped because of their dress?Recommend

  • ab

    excellent blog by the author. finally some non confused stuff. it’s really very very funny how people define modesty!. Recommend

  • http://jonathanshome.blogspot.com Jonathan

    I fully agree with Maryam Namazie on the issue, where she states the following:

    “What next? Maybe we can all try to
    mutilate our daughters on World
    Mutilation Day or marry off our girls
    on World Child Marriages Day? How
    about a day when our male guardians
    can track our whereabouts to make sure
    we aren’t leaving the country…”

    More info is at:

    http://freethoughtblogs.com/maryamnamazie/2013/02/01/world-hejab-day/

    Recommend

  • Rabia

    I really like your blog, and though I’m a non-hijabi, I intend to wear it soon. I totally agree with you that its a personal choice, and its sad how people in our part of our world look down upon those who are hijabis. Recommend

  • Rashid

    World Hijab day, World Burqa day, World Niqab day; all for women. What about the men?
    Why not a World beard (whisker less) day, World skull cap day or at least World circumcision day?Recommend

  • zafar

    She and those like her are obsessed or rather over-obsessed with sexual aspect of a person(women)’s life. That in my opinion is the real problem.A human being is much more than a sexual person. One should be raised and taught to think about doing something positive in his or her life.Recommend

  • observer

    Hence, I have never viewed hijab as a ‘choice,’ but rather as an integral part of the religion that I have already chosen to follow.

    And when precisely did you ‘chose’ to follow the religion you are following? At the age of 6 months? 6 years? 18 years? And how many other religions did you evaluate and on what basis before arriving at this momentous decision.
    Recommend

  • Mohammad Ali Gaad

    Wearing hijab doesn’t makes you embryonic but it adds something more to it.Majority,however doesn’t wear that because their desire; to be vaunted..Recommend

  • hoohoohoo

    brilliant!
    if a woman is to wear revealing dresses just to become socially acceptable, thats not female oppression but if she wears a scarf or hijab she is suddenly oppressed. well done liberals!Recommend

  • Malik

    Great…being Muslim, we are slaves of Allah, We do not have any choice but wearing hijab, so no other comments. Sister Mashallah, you will surely reap the benefits in this world and hereafter. Allah bless you.Recommend

  • Sameera Rashid

    @I am a Khan:

    As I understand- of course, I could be wrong- religious practices have practical implications and they are meant to mould human behaviour in a certain manner; and hijab or wearing modest dress is probably meant to regulate the ‘vices’- strong word- or ‘weaknesses’ of human vanity and needless obsession with personal appearance.
    However, as I see , a woman can be modest and mentally comfortable with less dandy appearance without wearing hijab.
    A model society cannot be created by doggedly following religious strictures. To create a moral society, we would have to translate practical sense behind religious decrees in our everyday behaviour.Recommend

  • Talha Rizvi

    @sad woman LOL
    @Ammar too trueRecommend

  • vaqas

    @Insaan:
    What about the poor goats that get a share of our lewdness :p
    who will speak out for them??Recommend

  • Aalia Suleman

    @observer

    Dear Sir/madam…Alhamdullillah my parents are Muslims and so were the countless generations before them. I did not ‘choose’ Islam but Allah had already made that decision for me. For that I remain forever indebt to Him. When I wrote ‘I have already chosen to follow’, it did not imply that I had ‘chosen’ Islam in the literal sense (out of five or six other religions) but rather that I had ‘accepted’ to follow its key tenets keenly and wholeheartedly. Hope this clears up the confusion over the use of the word ‘chosen’ in my quote. Recommend

  • Fiza

    I have done some research on this topic and i think there are two schools of thought: The first says that hijab is compulsory in Islam; the second emphasis more on dressing up modestly. Now before we reach any kind of conclusion, we need to see the socio-economic conditions of that era. Hijab predates islam and women of high-stature used to wear it, it was very common in Iran where women from upper class were draped in hijab, as it was a status symbol. These well-bred women generally didn’t do any work and were being looked after well on account of being born into a noble family. On the other hand there were peasants who worked in farms and could not afford the luxury of hijab or burka, as the nature of work dis not allow them and they did not have the time to make a fashion statement loke all those hugh-rank women! Now coming back to the topic, when islam came, hijab was recommended to differentiate free women from salve-women and to protect them from being attacked as it was a common practice to rape slave-girls..

    Women are exempted from wearing hijab before any male who is a mehram and their male-slaves (my question, dont their (male-slaves) sexual organs function the same way as any other male’s or were they castrated before being made a male-slave). SO THE ENTIRE IDEA BEHIND HIJAB WAS TO PROTECT FREE BELIEVING WOMEN AS MEN WERE NOT VERY CIVILIZED AND SLAVES HAD NO RIGHTS!!!

    Now if you wear hijab in a western country you will be stared at, harassed and probably invite more trouble which beats the entire purpose of hijab…I suggest, you rather dress up modestly to blend in well like islam advocated in that era… times have changed and we need to be realistic in our approach! Some blind sheeps have no idea about religion yet keep beating the drum to attract attention. Please try to understand the concept behind Hijab, rather than flaunting it to your advantage!!!Recommend

  • http://truthrevealedpakistan.blogspot.com/ Khurshid Khan

    Great article with strong arguments. I think Hijab is not a hurdle in the way to progress.Recommend

  • Khalida Tiwana

    Agree totally with @ I am a KhanRecommend

  • Rex Minor

    Good to know Alyas opinion about Hijab. In any case Hijab has nothing to do with the religion. This has been practiced centuries ago by Jewish, christian and muslim women centuries ago and in religious rituals. It is currently worn by christian Nuns and is a fashion among young muslim girls born in families with migration background in the UK, France and Germany.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • TTV

    @hoohoohoo:
    “but if she wears a scarf or hijab she is suddenly oppressed. well done liberals!”

    I think you’ve been misinformed. “Liberals” believe that a woman should have the right to wear what ever she pleases without being criticised. Be it coconut shells or a parachute.Recommend

  • Dr.X

    If someone wears Burqa or Niqab because of religious reasons, then we should learn to respect her choice. Does it have an Impact on the society? We can’t say that for sure unless we compare the statistics of the crimes against women in different parts of the world. Recommend

  • observer

    @Aalia Suleman:

    Alhamdullillah my parents are Muslims and so were the countless generations before them. I did not ‘choose’ Islam but Allah had already made that decision for me.

    A.I have never viewed hijab as a ‘choice,’ but rather as an integral part of the religion that I have already chosen to follow.

    B.Hijabis are forced by their husbands/families to cover their heads
    This may be the case with a lot of people but definitely not all of them.
    Certainly not myself; In fact, I was the one to convince my better half into this decision.

    Admittedly, the ‘religion’ had already been chosen by God himself or at least by some ancestors ‘countless generations’ back. And admittedly, Hijab comes as an ‘integral part’ of the same ‘chosen religion’.

    Then, where does the need for convincing come from? Is the ‘husband’ not from the same religion, of which ‘hijab is an integral part’? Or, was he under the impression that it is a matter of ‘choice’ and needed to be ‘convinced’/ corrected?

    helps preserve the sanctity of marriage by reducing temptation for either party to stray.

    You mean, all the four marriages are part of a religious duty in which ‘temptation’ does not play a role? Or once ‘temptation’ has done its part ‘hijab’ takes over to avoid further ‘temptation’?Recommend

  • shocked at fiza’s argument

    @fiza

    if God has prescribed Hijab for woman, why do we have to rethink it?

    I am wondering if u will come up with the argument that since life is so much busy these days as compared to Prophet pbuh time so its okay we do not say our prayers. Recommend

  • elementary

    I present this Blog of yours as an exhibit in favour of your last argument ……….”Hijabis are mindless, poorly educated, suppressed women without an opinion or the ability to function“. Recommend

  • umm_ismael

    @FreedomOfHeresy: Yes and thats because you said so… duh! So it becomes an indisputable fact like te sun rising from the east and so on and so forth. The lady who wrote this piece just negated what you said but pre formed opinions led you to comment exactly as you percieved the hijab before you read the article. Masculine control – thats a poor argument. So men win by keeping females covered up – sister/brother you have got to be kidding me!Recommend

  • umm_ismael

    @Parvez:
    but your opinion does not constitute religion the Quran and Sunnah do. Modesty is not the only description but an exact defined dress has been meted out. Further the problem with such mind sets exist both ways dont theyRecommend

  • umm_ismael

    @Rex Minor: what brilliant reserach – how long did that take you a nanosecond !!!Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    @Dr.X:
    There are no religious reasons for dresses!!! Both men and women must have equal rights to work and live in line with codes of their communiies: Criminals must be confronted by civil courage and the laws of the land.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • Rex Minor

    @Fiza:

    ET took 22 hrs to publsh your partly detailed comments. The simple reality is that Hijab has no relevance for the religion, jews, christians and muslims and yes many rich an powerful women in their times did cover their head and even used a semi transparent veil, primarily to show modesty in prayers. The European women discontinued it after the industrial revolution in western Europe with the exception of those in the service of the church.

    Learn the arabic language and the arabic culture is the golden rule if any one wants to relate any tradition or cultural practice with the religion of Islam.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • zafar

    @Rashid:
    As far as I know, the Quran exhorts both men and women to be modest when interacting with each other.
    Why to demand more from women and subject them to extra burden? Recommend

  • Fiza

    @Shocked, I am shocked that you can even suggest such a thing. Prayer is a pillar of islam and hence cannot be debated!

    Unfortunately, my arguments is too sophisticated for you to understand and i do not expect everyone to understand the logic behind hijab. Recommend

  • Fiza

    @ Shocked, why is hijab always discussed in the context of women? God has also prescribed hijab for men by telling them to lower their gaze. Hijab also Includes comportment/behavior and conduct among other things and not just dress code. Here i was just referring to head & face coverage as I did mention to dress up modestly so please don’t twist the meaning for the sake of an argument!. Recommend

  • Sara

    @Parvez:
    Very well said Pervez there is no dress more modest than our own and a shawl wrapped loosely over the head does the job. Women from our part of the world have dressed modestly without the aid of the Saudi dress influence for centuries, I get wound up when women make a big deal about it. Wear it but don’t get holier than thou about it. Recommend

  • Ayesha

    Well the blog written very beautifully and the comparisons made are what the best could have been done to realize Muslim woman and man that hijab is just not only your choice if you have a mindset you will understand that it is which we all Muslims need to do. In Islam hijab was never been expressed as a choice. It has always being made clear that it should be done by Muslim women’s. The whole Surahs are there written on hijab issue. But unfortunately we don’t read our Holy book and comment here as we are the only Muslim scholars. If you all get time after writing comments on modesty and women’s with hijab as choice do study the Holy book that is somewhere on the top of the shelf so never to be touched. Read some Haidths on this issue and then comment. Making hijab a choice is like you make other basic things asked by religion as a choice.
    Secondly, covering oneself male or female doesn’t matter surly saves you from many sins. can you say that a naked woman/ half dressed/ less clothes on TV, movie websites will not tempt you more than a woman in full clothes, or hijab.

    This is not an issue Muslim woman and man should not argue on this subject. Because Islam is a religion with no question marks. The question marks should always be from the non Muslims. Because they don’t know about the religion. What we depicted here on blogs and comments is that we are not sure about our religion and ask others please comment to tell us what you think about our religious teachings.
    Well the right thing should always be preached, than it is his/her duty to follow or not. But there is always a difference between following religion and making a choice out it. Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    @Ayesha:

    Islam is a religion with no question marks, is the right statement! To be able to read and understand Quraan requires the knowedge of the classical arabic language and the arabian culture.

    Arabic language is the richest, philosophical and scientific as well as sophisticated of all the world languages which number 6000 languages which also include spoken pakistani languages. Hence, the arabic language became the medium for Quraan suras which were intended to reorm the Ibrahimic religion which jews and the christians then practiced.

    If it makes you feel happy to wear a hijab with your Pakistani or a french design dress, then this is good enough a reason to follow your choice. And if you wish to wear the hijab so as not disturb the social peace in your community then you are well counciled to follow. But please, do not support your decision with the religion requirement. Yes, by all means read the original Quraan suras in arabic language and so should all muslims who have promised to be muslims.
    Knowledge is a virtue!

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • Rex Minor

    ET has reduced the delay to 11 hrs in approving blogger comments. Not bad, people of Pakistan were occupied for upto two centuries and has a ot to catch up. The world has moved on while the knowledge of the occupied people stood still and have now to deal with issues such as dress styles that the Europeans confronted several centuries before them.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • pi

    @Rex Minor
    “….people of Pakistan were occupied for upto two centuries and has a lot to catch up.”

    Correction: occupied for upto thirteen centuries.Recommend

  • Sidra

    hijab is choice. if 1 doesnt want, no 1 could force & vice-versaRecommend

  • Insaan

    @Rex Minor: “Learn the arabic language and the arabic culture is the golden rule if any one wants to relate any tradition or cultural practice with the religion of Islam.”

    So all Muslim women should wear burqa according to arabic culture. Men should have multiples wives. All men should have beard and cover their heads. Is arab culture part of true Islam. Recommend

  • Insaan

    @Sidra: hijab is choice. if 1 doesnt want, no 1 could force & vice-versa

    Does Islam say, hijab is a choice?Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    @Insaan:

    No sir, a muslim should learn the arabic language and the arabian culture so that he or she can interpret the Quraan suras independent of translations. Use your brain was the advice Mohammad(pbuh) the prophet of God said to one of his curious desciples to be able to understand God’s commandments.

    The last paragraph of your comments has no relevance with the religion. Quraan is the first holy book which prohibits polygamy. The arab culture is not a part of Islam.

    Rex Minor

    PS One must learn the cultural background of the people so as to understand the language of such people.Recommend

  • Rex Minor

    Insan, Sidra,

    My knowledge of English is limited, but let me use the word ‘ Nostalgia’ for cultural and traditional traits, which include growing beard, wearing Hijab or veils and whatever. However, since the religion of Islam is way of life, muslims have the obligation ro reflect the values of their religion.

    Rex MinorRecommend

  • Fatima

    Ignore the haters, Aaliya. You’ve nailed it. Recommend

  • sara

    totally agree with you on how lame the ‘modesty is in the eyes’ excuse! Recommend

  • Mukarram Khan

    Hijab is the order of ALLAH, it is not a matter of choice.Recommend