Mary Ali – Anjum Ali
(part 1 of 2): The various rights that Islam grants to women
Today, people think that women in the West are free and the movement for the liberation of women in the 20th Century began. But actually the women’s movement was not started by women, but was revealed in the 7th century by God to a man named Muhammad, God’s blessing and peace be upon him the last prophet of God. The Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet are the sources from which every Muslim woman derives her rights and duties.
Fourteen centuries ago, Islam made women equally responsible for praising and praising God and serving Him – without setting any limits. Islam also established equal rights for women in humanity. In the Quran, the first verse of the chapter entitled „The Women“ states:
“O people, fear your Lord, who created you from a single being; and from him He created his wife, and from the two He made many men and women arise. And fear God, in whose name you ask each other, and (in the name of your kinship). Surely God watches over you. ” (Quran 4: 1)
Since men and women come from the same essence, they are the same in their humanity. Women cannot be bad by nature (as some religions teach), otherwise men would also be bad. And accordingly, no gender can be superior, because that too would be a contradiction to equality.
In Islam, women are free to choose and express themselves on the basis of recognizing their own personality. First, a non-Muslim woman cannot be forced to convert for marriage or because of her parents‘ conversion. The Quran states.
“There is no compulsion in belief. The right way is now clearly recognizable compared to the wrong one. ” (Quran 2: 256)
In Islam, women are encouraged to contribute their opinions and ideas. There are numerous records from the Prophet that show that women asked him direct questions and shared their views on religion, the economy, and social affairs.
A Muslim woman has the full right to accept or reject a marriage proposal, and she may keep her maiden name when married. A Muslim woman’s testimony is valid in court hearings. In fact, her evidence is more convincing in matters where women are more knowledgeable.
The Prophet said:
“Acquiring knowledge is a duty for every Muslim (male or female).” (At-Tirmidhi)
This includes knowledge of the Quran and Hadieth as well as knowledge of a different kind. Men and women both have the ability to learn and understand. Since it is also her duty to develop good behavior and to loathe bad behavior in all areas of life, the Muslim woman must also be given adequate education in order to be able to fulfill her duties in accordance with her natural dispositions and interests.
While carrying, raising and raising children, as well as supporting her husband and looking after her household are among the first and most respected roles of women, she can also do good for the community outside the home if she has the ability and at the same time can fulfill her duties towards her family.
Islam recognizes the natural differences between men and women despite their equality and takes them into account. Some jobs are more suitable for men than for women. This in no way diminishes their efforts or benefits. God will reward both sexes equally for their work, even if it does not necessarily have to be the same.
As for motherhood, the Prophet said,
„The heavens are at her feet.“ (An-Nasai)
This indicates that a society’s success can be attributed to the mothers who raised it. The first and greatest influence on a person comes from the security, affection and upbringing that his mother gave him. Therefore, a woman who has children needs to be educated and aware in order to become a capable mother.
One right that Muslim women were granted 1400 years ago is the right to express their opinion on social issues. It may comment on any public matter and participate in politics. Islam also does not prohibit a woman from occupying key government positions that match her role as a woman. Abdurrahman Ibn Awf asked numerous women for advice before suggesting Uthman Ibn Affan as Khalif.
Islam is clear in terms of its teachings that God created men and women differently, with unique roles, functions, and abilities. As in society, where each individual fulfills his own task, it is also in the family, in which each member has different responsibilities. In general, women in Islam have the protective role and men the protective role. Therefore women have the right to financial support.
The Quran says:
“Men are responsible for women because God has honored one person over another and because they give up their wealth (for their maintenance).” (Quran 4:34)
This protective role and greater financial responsibility imposed on men determines that they should not only maintain women financially, but also physically protect and treat them in a friendly and respectful manner.
Muslim women have the privilege of earning money, the right to acquire property, sign contracts and manage their possessions as they please. They can run their own businesses and no one is entitled to their earnings, including their husbands.
The Quran says:
“And do not desire what Allah has given one of you before the other. Men should receive their share based on their earnings and women should receive their share based on their earnings. And asks God for His grace. Verily, God has perfect knowledge of all things. ” (Quran 4:32)
A woman inherits from her relatives. The Quran says:
“Men are entitled to part of the legacy of their parents and relatives. Be it a little or a lot. (That applies) as a prescribed proportion. ” (Quran 4: 7)
(part 2 of 2): The various rights that Islam grants to women
Rights of a wife
In the Quran,
“And among His signs is that He created wives for you from within yourself so that you may find peace with them; and He put affection and mercy between you. Here are truly signs of a people who think. ” (Quran 30:21)
Marriage is therefore not only a physical or emotional necessity, but actually a sign of God! It is a relationship of mutual rights and obligations based on divine guidance. God created men and women with complementary natures and in the Qur’an He established a system of laws that support the harmonious relationships between the two sexes.
„… They are a dress for you and you are a dress for them …“ (Quran 2: 187)
Clothing protects the body and covers the beauty or flaws of the body. The spouse is viewed in the same way. One protects the other and hides his mistakes and flatters the characteristics of the husband. Muslim women have various rights to satisfy the love and security that marriage provides. The wife’s first right is to receive Mahr, a gift from her husband that is part of the marriage contract and is necessary for its legal force.
The second right is alimony. No matter what wealth she herself has, her husband is obliged to provide her with food, accommodation and clothing. But he’s not forced to spend more than he can, and his wife can’t make unreasonable demands. The Quran says:
“Everyone should give from his abundance if he has abundance; and the one whose means are limited should spend according to what God has given him. God does not ask anything of any soul beyond what He has given her. ” (Quran 65: 7)
God tells us that men are responsible for women and have family leadership. His responsibility for obedience to God extends to leading his family to be obedient to God at all times.
A wife’s rights go beyond material needs. She has the right to be treated kindly. The Prophet said:
“The most perfect believers are those with the best behavior. And the best of you are the best of your wives. ”
God tells us that He created companions and placed love, grace and rest between them.
Both men and women have a need for society and sexual needs, and marriage meets both of these needs. Because if one spouse refuses this satisfaction of the other, the temptation arises to look for it elsewhere.
Obligations of a wife
Obligations come with rights. Therefore, wives have certain duties towards their spouses. The Quran says,
„… That is why virtuous women are obedient and those who keep (their spouses) secrets with God’s help …“ (Quran 4:34)
A woman should keep her spouse’s secrets and protect her marital intimacy. The woman should not tell anyone about intimate matters or mistakes that would dishonor him, just as he is expected to keep her honor.
A woman must also keep the property of her spouse. It must protect its home and possessions from theft or damage as best it can. It should take care of the household wisely and thus prevent it from being lost or wasted. She shouldn’t allow anyone to enter the house that her spouse doesn’t like or plunge into any expenses that her husband disapproves of.
A Muslim woman has to work with and adapt to her spouse. However, there can be no collaboration with a husband who is disobedient to God. She should not comply with his requests if he asks her to do anything prohibited. A husband should not take advantage of his wife, but also think about her needs and joy.
In the Quran it says:
“And it is not fitting for a believing man and woman that if God and His Messenger have resolved a matter (for them) they (after) make a different choice in their matter. And the one who does not obey God and His Messenger is obviously going astray. ” (Quran 33:36)
The Muslim woman was assigned a role, duties and rights 1400 years ago that most women in the West do not even enjoy today. These come from God and have been used to balance society, what seems unjust or missing in one place is balanced or explained in another place. Islam is a complete way of life.