I just came across this post on Sarah’s blog, and it really moved me.  Find it here.

Some amazing excerpts:

Muslim men do not and cannot fully understand the lived experiences of Muslim women, both those who wear hijaab and don’t. Second, it would be like asking a White non-Muslim man to discuss how people of color “should feel” about whatever experiences they may have had with racism in their lives. It doesn’t make sense when one could be talking to the affected people directly. What does a Muslim man know about being a Muslim woman and wearing or not wearing hijaab? Nothing. So, why not talk to Muslim women themselves? Why not let Muslim women scholars address and discuss this topic? Wouldn’t that generate a richer discussion instead of listening to Muslim men simply sharing their “thoughts” and “scholarly knowledge” about something that will never affect them?

When we allow male heterosexual interpretations dominate the discourse, it leads to pushing fellow Muslims out of our community. In particular, Muslim women who don’t wear hijaab are far too often stigmatized, marginalized, and excluded by other Muslims.

Rather than focusing on how Muslim women dress, Muslim men should turn inward and address serious issues like the misogynistic interpretations of the Qur’an, the way we’re conditioned to perceive and treat women, and how patriarchy is counter-productive to Islam’s message of gender equality. Muslim men need to trust that Muslim women are smart enough to discuss hijaab and dress code on their own. We also need to become allies for the Muslim women who seek equal prayer space, equal opportunities, and equal rights in our community.


11 thoughts on “Brilliant!

  1. a reporter cant report about differend countries, because he is american in iraq? So a writer cant write about islam because he himself isnt muslim? Then most of the books we read in english about islam and history would be of no use. So women shouldnt open their mouths about islamic scholarly questions because those fields are in the hands of men? I can as a man speak about the hijab, i might not know how it feels to wear one, but i know how my sister feels.

    Only “muslims” i know of who let women lead prayer in the past, were the infamous khawarij..

    • Actually a few other scholars (Tabari for example) also said women could lead men in prayer…
      I must say, I think if more women had participated (i.e. been allowed to participate) in Islamic scholarship, we would have a very different idea about things like hijab today.

  2. I support men talking about hijab because I know I myself go on and on about *men’s* hijab. Plus I know that, for example, my husband knows my journey regarding hijab so I am confident that if he chose to speak about it, he would understand.
    What I don’t support is some men being disrespectful and not really understanding what it means for a woman to begin wearing hijab.
    The best hijab advice I heard was coincidentally from a man. He did happen to wear a turban + robes full time so really understood but I think that shows that respectful men do know how to talk about hijab, it’s just (and this really revolves around everything in Islam doesn’t it) the ones who are ridiculous about it that get the most publicity, etc.

    But other than that supporting women to come into more public Islamic roles is always a good thing ^_^

  3. Salaam!

    Thank you so much for sharing my post! Your kind words are really appreciated. And it’s always nice to discover new blogs and bloggers. 🙂 Will be bookmarking your blog and visiting again soon!

  4. Assalamualaikum,

    Here’s another reason women are to wear the hijab: its a commansd from Allah interpreted by Muhammad SAWS to mean cover yourself from head to toe. It was then picked by the sahabiyat of the time to means something that is compulsory. IT was also something that was enforced by the sahaba. I am sure you will find references to it in the books suggested by the male scholars.

    whats that surah nisa Ayat? Ar-rijalu Qawwamuna ‘Alan Nisa…?

    Ironically i am a woman but i find people who want to dole out gender bias in big heaps annoying. I don’t care whether a man wrote it or a woman what i do care about is where their daleels/ proofs came from and does it go back to Nabi SAWS, to the Sahaba’s or lacking that ijma’ of tabaeen.. Maybe everyone needs to follow…..

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