Witness Pioneer | Magazine

Index

  Editorial

  Women’s Dignity, Rights and Empowerment in Islam

  The Purpose of Marriage

Editorial

Women issue is a burning question of the
present century. The deprivation, disrespect
and oppression towards women are causing
great distress to the society. Also, the practice of
being reclusive in the society is another
important issue. We are very happy for being
able to publish two enriched articles in the 2nd
publication of “The Window”.
Expecting instructive criticism and advice from
you.
Ma’as Salam.

Women’s Dignity, Rights and Empowerment in Islam

Shah Abdul Hannan
We here a lot of things about women’s position
and rights in a society. Some of the words that
are expressed about the realization of women’s
rights are acceptable. Again there is room for
different opinions on some points. It is
imperative to establish the rights of men and
women fully as the society is moving forward
everyday. So rights of every individual must be
established.
The society has made significant progress
during last fifty years. The women like men
have come forward though not equally. We have
left far behind the society we had during Begum
Rokeya’s time . She found that girls had no
adequate opportunity for education. You ladies
perhaps could not have received education if
Begum Rokeya was not born at that time & had
not taken audacious initiatives for female
education.
In the whole world especially in our country the
opposition that is being unleashed on the people
particularly on the women has a foundation.
The ideological foundation for the persecution
on women by men and at times by women
themselves is generally the people’s (particularly
men’s) belief that women are inferior to men
having low quality. The belief originates from
some erroneous ideas among people. And on this
belief is standing the firmly the whole edifice of
oppression, deprivation and disrespect towards
women.
If we want to eradicate persecution on women in
Bangladesh, it can’t be done excluding Islam.
Those who have revolted against Islam are not
able to sustain in a country where 90% people
are Muslims. I firmly believe that there is such a
framework in Islam that can ensure the
progress of women.
I am not in favor of distorting Islam nor I am
inclined to giving temporary interpretation of
Islam. I true sense Islam has empowered women
and upheld there respect. Islam has ensured
rights for women. But before expounding this I
would mention what could be the ideological
foundation on which the fundamental equality
of both men and women depends. Allah has not
created all human beings with similar
appearance. Two persons are never equal in
every dot. One person is different from another
in terms of weight, height, color, education etc.
Even two twins do not possess the same genetic
characteristics. But to almighty Allah every
human being is equal. I would like to present
four basic arguments to prove this. I say “basic”
because there would remain some other
differences between men and women:
1. Allah has made this clear that the
fundamental element of real human being isruh,
that we call spirit or soul. The body perishes in
grave. Allah created the ruhs of all human
beings at the same time, in the same way and
asked them a single question. All men and
women gave the same answer.
When thy Lord drew forth
From the children of Adam
From their loins -
Their descendants, and made them
Testify concerning themselves (saying):
“Am I not your lord (who cherishes and sustains
you)?”-
They said: “Yea!
We do testify!” [7:172]
It means all men reached an agreement on the
point that is, “ Yes you are our Lord and we
shall obey you.” Here no separate agreements
were made with men or with women. So the first
word about our ideological foundation is that
the real human being is the ruh and all spirits
are equal.
2. We, men, boast that our physical structure is
superior to that of women and think that Allah
has created us better comparatively. But Allah
has made it very clear in the Holy Qur’an that
there is, of course, some difference betweenall
human beings but every one is superb. Allah
says, “We have indeed created human being in
the best moulds”[95:4].
So, to establish the fundamental equality of men
or women or to launch a new movement for
women or the humanity at large, men should not
say that the structures of women are inferior.
Allah would not like that.
[To be continued]

The Purpose of Marriage

Lois Lamya al Faruqi
The importance of marriage in Islamic Society
and its advocacy by the religious teachings rest
on the avowed purposes it serves. First, Muslims
regard marriage as providing a balance between
individualistic needs and the welfare of the
group to which the individual belongs. As such,
it is regarded as a social and psychological
necessity for every member of the community.
Second, marriage is a mechanism for moral and
mutually beneficial control of sexual behavior
and procreation. Islam regards sexual activity as
an important and perfectly healthy drive of both
males and females. Thus, it is not shameful and
should not be denied to members of either sex.
Lack of sexual satisfaction is believed to cause
personality maladjustment and to endanger the
mental health and efficiency of the society. Islam
therefore commends sex as natural and good but
restricts it to participants of a union, which
ensures responsibility for its consequences.
A third purpose of marriage is its provision of a
stable ambience for the rearing of children.
Islam sees this purpose as inextricably tied to an
extended family system. The extended family
may vary in size, even in residential proximity,
as is evidenced in different regions of the
Muslim world, but the cohesion its members is
inextricably bound to Qur’anic prescriptions
adasd
and Islamic Law. These explicitly enunciate the
rights and obligations of its members and
the legal extent of those benefits and
responsibilities.
Fourth, marriage assures crucial economic
benefits for women during their childbearing
years. Self-support during this period is
difficult, if not impossible, for mothers who have
no outside help. Even if sustained by the
“supermom”, of which we hear so much in
recent times, the psychological and economical
tool for such persons is beyond what most
individuals can tolerate.
Fifth, the close companionship of the marital
partners provides economical gratification for
men and women. The importance of this
purpose of marriage in Islam is evidenced by
repeated references in the Qur’an and Hadith
literature to the quiescence (30:21; 7:189) and
protective nature (9:71) of the bond between the
spouses. The man and woman are considered to
be so close that they are described as garments
of one another (2:187). The clemency, love, and
consideration enjoined on the partners appear
repeatedly in both religious and legal texts.