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Discussion Starter #1
I attend Dallas Baptist University here in Dallas, Texas. One of my assignments for a class is to interview a muslim, pref. same-gender. I have a list of about twenty questions I need answered ASAP. I thought I had them in my bag, but I guess they are in my dorm. I will post them asap. Thanks!
 

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I'd be glad to help whenever you get the questions... just post here or send me a PM.
 

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Ditto the above. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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if you still need more...pm me...i'd love to help, too<br><br>
peace,<br>
jen
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I was able to get the report finished, but i am really interested in Islam's treatment of women. How do you feel about hijab? Do you wear it? When did you start? How do you tie it? What do you feel about those who do not wear hijab if they are muslim? what if they are not?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>asoulunbound</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8196002"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I was able to get the report finished, but i am really interested in Islam's treatment of women. How do you feel about hijab? Do you wear it? When did you start? How do you tie it? What do you feel about those who do not wear hijab if they are muslim? what if they are not?</div>
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I've been a hijabi mommy, but am not covered at present after a near-heatstroke last year in FL. I don't personally feel that it is required, only that it is recommended. The passage in the Koran that is frequently quoted is 24:31 (Yusuf Ali translation):<br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husbands' sons, their brothers or their brothers' sons, or their sisters' sons, or their women, or the slaves whom their right hands possess, or male servants free of physical needs, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex; and that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments. And O ye Believers! turn ye all together towards Allah, that ye may attain Bliss.</td>
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What is specifically mentioned is women's <b>bosoms</b>, not their hair or faces. What is required is to dress modestly, for both men and women, and that we should keep our gaze within modest boundaries. In the time of the Prophet, only his wives and the wealthy women of society covered their heads. (The Prophet's wives were not from that strata, for the most part.) I firmly believe that if God wanted us to wear particular garments, he would've spelled it out for us, as he did with so many other issues. We have Koranic verses that define inheritance rights, proper conduct, how to treat slaves, how to engage in business dealings, and how to treat others in all kinds of situations. If hijab was that big of a deal, surely it would've been spelled out to the letter. (Cover all your hair, including those little wispy things in front, your neck, the waddle under your chin, you hands and feet, and one eye.)<br><br>
What is most important to God is what is in our hearts, our intent. If we go out every day in "perfect" hijab, yet mistreat people and animals, lust for wealth and power, drink and gamble, or any number of other "bad" things, then why do we bother with the hijab? Then it becomes a mockery of our beliefs, rather than a symbol of them. Imagine a person committing murder while wearing a cross on a chain. Is that person still a Christian?<br><br>
When I wear hijab, does that make me better than a Muslim woman who doesn't? Heck no! I"m not perfect and neither is she. It is not my position to judge, that is God's alone. What it does do for me is help me to stay within the boundaries that God *did* set up for me, something that I don't always manage to do on my own. It helps me to remember the expectations that God has for me and how I can best fulfill those.<br><br>
I don't have an issue with women of other faiths (or no faith) covering their heads. It's not a Muslim-only thing, never has been. Plenty of Orthodox Jewish women cover their heads, either with a wig or with a scarf. The Christian women (Armenian) here in Turkiye also cover their heads in many cases. One cannot assume that a woman with a scarf on her head is Muslim (although I think it stands to reason if she is wearing a chaador, burka, or niqab).<br><br>
I think it's interesting that hijab is seen as such an item of oppression. In and of itself, the wearing of a scarf over one's hair is no more oppressive than the wearing of a cross around one's neck. It's when either of these is forced that it becomes oppression. By the same token, when it's not allowed freely, that is also oppression. I live in a country that is about 98% Muslim, but women who are covered are not allowed to attend university or hold government positions. Ironically, our most devout Muslim women have to go abroad to primarily Christian countries to obtain an education. We have freedom *from* religion, whereas you in the US have freedom *of* religion. Bizarre. But that's a totally different thread.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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Kate, that is a fabulous response! My language teacher is Muslim and I asked her why she didn't wear a hajib when all of her friends did. She said, "I'm not going to be a hypocrite. I'm not perfect, and I mess up!" We've had some interesting conversations!
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>asoulunbound</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8196002"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I was able to get the report finished, but i am really interested in Islam's treatment of women. How do you feel about hijab? Do you wear it? When did you start? How do you tie it? What do you feel about those who do not wear hijab if they are muslim? what if they are not?</div>
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If one compares the treatment of women in the Bible to that in the Qur'an, then the Qur'an clearly offered a lot more rights for women--guaranteed inheritence, right to own property, right to divorce, etc. Islam also stressed education for all... male and female.. which was revolutionary at the time. BUT, if you look at the state of Muslim women's rights today, it seems that they have gone backwards to pre-Quranic times. Illiteracy is 40% in the Gulf region... many women are physically abused in the name of Islam... etc. I don't really see hijab as a critical issue--when there are so many more pressing issues we should be concerned about. I almost think that Muslims use hijab as an excuse not to talk about the *real* issues of women's status in Islam. Do I think women should be forced to wear hijab?? No... and I don't think they should be prohibited from wearing it either. You'll hear some men say that women should all wear it so that they don't tempt men.... well, that takes away the man's responsibility to not take a second look <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
I've been uncovered and covered throughout my life as a Muslim. It annoys me that if people (both Muslims and non-Muslims) see me with hijab, I automatically become a "good" Muslim or a conservative Muslim. They know nothing about me... whether I pray, give charity, am kind, etc. My political views, religious opinions, etc. Everything is assumed. Similarly, if I don't wear hijab, I'm either assumed to not be a Muslim or am assumed to be a non-practicing or liberal one. Currently I wear hijab... I don't care if my fellow Sisters wear hijab or not... it's their choice... and their spiritual path with God.<br><br>
As for tying it, I ususally wear these two piece hijabs that require no pins called Al Amirah hijabs. I buy them from veiledbydesign.com and also buy her headbands which allow me to change the look. With two young kids who love to pull off hijabs, they work better than any pin variety. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
If I'm going out and want to look a bit more dressed up, I'll wear a shayla (you can see these on her site too... look at the combinations). Usually, I pin it under my chin and then sort of wrap it around my head.<br><br>
Al Amirah Hijab <a href="http://www.veiledbydesign.com/product_info.php?cPath=14_62&products_id=2211" target="_blank">http://www.veiledbydesign.com/produc...oducts_id=2211</a><br><br>
A shayla look (the shayla is the rectangular scarf)...<br><a href="http://www.veiledbydesign.com/product_info.php?cPath=36&products_id=1953" target="_blank">http://www.veiledbydesign.com/produc...oducts_id=1953</a>
 

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Discussion Starter #12
umsami, I think you are right when you say that<br>
"If people (both Muslims and non-Muslims) see me with hijab, I automatically become a "good" Muslim or a conservative Muslim."<br>
I know I am guilty of that when I see veiled sisters.<br>
As for veiling, I think veiling by choice is really a beautiful idea. I don't see it as an item of oppression, unless it is forced or extreme like a burqa.<br>
I sometimes veil for church. It helps remind me that this is a sacred time with God. I also veiled when I went to church in India and the two times I went to a mosque.<br>
I think the reason behind the hijab is much more important! I look forward to reading more responses (although these were very well thought out!)<br>
Thanks.
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>asoulunbound</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8203285"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I don't see it as an item of oppression, unless it is forced or extreme like a burqa.</div>
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I'm curious about this statement. What is it about a <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burqa" target="_blank">burqa</a> (or <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chador" target="_blank">chador</a>, or çarşaf in Turkish) that is somehow more oppressive, provided that it is freely chosen? Is it the countries with which they are typically associated (Saudi Arabia and Iran)? Or is it because they are more extreme in their removal of personal identifying factors? (It is really hard to pick out your best friend from a gaggle of çarşaf women, believe me!)
 

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<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I was able to get the report finished, but i am really interested in Islam's treatment of women. How do you feel about hijab? Do you wear it? When did you start? How do you tie it? What do you feel about those who do not wear hijab if they are muslim? what if they are not?</td>
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Hijab is something that I have had a hard time with. I've read Muslim-written criticisms, like those posted by Kate, and more traditional and conservative arguments on the other side. I've put the scarf on and off several times, and am wearing it now---and this is the first time I've worn it completely consistently, even around my parents and other relatives. I am fully committed to it in a way which I haven't been before. I converted to Islam about 3.5 yrs ago.<br><br>
I guess it comes down to this---we know that the wives of the Prophet covered their hair, and that the first Muslimahs mimicked them. We know that modesty is incredibly important in Islam. I do what I can to please God. And covering helps me maintain a good mindset, it helps me be constantly conscious of Islam, and I believe it is at the very least a favored act.<br><br>
For the other questions---no, I don't look down on non-hijabis. I was one of them! I think hijab is wonderful, but it's certainly not the most important behavior change that Islam dictates. There is a correlation in my community between wearing hijab and being more active within the masjid, though.<br><br>
As far as tying...since I'm usually juggling kids, I usually like to wear an <a href="http://www.hijabs-r-us.com/media/AN2PC5511U.JPG" target="_blank">al-amira style</a>. When I don't have a kid to chase, I like shaylas <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 
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