Men choking the Faith

I have often felt dejected at the way the foreign media projects the status of women under the banner of Islam. Whereas Islam enjoins perfect equality between men and women, it is heralded to the world as a faith that suppresses women, confines them within the four walls of their homes and alternately, looks down upon those who set foot outside the custody of the house. I have however, stumbled upon the fact that neither the foreign media nor the non-Muslims are to be blamed. It is really a matter for men who profess to be Muslims to look beneath their skin, into their blood with which they asphyxiate the breath of Islam and choke the life out of it - in effect, portraying it as a cruel faith.

Men of one faith will understand the other faith vis-a-vis the way it is practically witnessed by them because not all will delve into original sources with utmost devotion in order to realize the true spirit of the other.

Consider the following illustration.

Being alien to the religion of Islam, I walk into the village of Jubala - an underdeveloped and non-education oriented region. I am told that the natives there follow the religion of Islam. I shall easily be led into interpreting Islam as defined by the ancient customs of tribes inhabiting the region.

Consider another illustration.

Being somewhat alien to the religion of Islam, I walk into the city of Zameersi - relatively a developed and education-oriented region. I am told that a vast majority of the area's residents are Muslims. I, thus, understand Islam in the spirit of activity of the locals. I have been briefed. According to which, Islam is a tolerant faith. It grants equal status to men and women and it enjoins peace. But...

Alas! My observance runs averse to all pre-conceived notions. Islam does not enjoin the treatment of women in perfect likeness to men. Quite on the contrary, in fact. My discovery owes itself to a chance affiliation with a local family. The man sets out to work. The lady of the house stays at home. She is not supposed to be involved in any intellectual exhibition since that is not an option on her side of the 'equation'. Rather, she is supposed to stay at home, cook and keep the house clean. It takes an hour or two. Then what? Can she move out for - if nothing else - air? Not at all. Her religion requires her to stay inside her house and wait for the hard-working, deserving individual to return. Eleven hours in the office and he has earned the day's worth. It would only be fair if he were allowed a couple of hours to chill around with friends. Ten would be a good time to get back home. Dinner would be ready by then. Surely, its on the table. In the follow-up - and being human - it is only understandable that he gets a bit drowsy. The wife must not ask for any simple talk time, for Islam enjoins on the woman to allow her husband to relax since he is obviously providing her with food, clothes and shelter. She need not and should not demand more. He does his share of the work and goes to bed. She does her share of the work and must go to bed to rise again early morning and prepare breakfast for hubby dear. For surely, he has a tough day ahead of him. The weekend finally approaches and she welcomes it with open arms. A tough week, full of chores at home and zero interaction leaves her exhausted. But then, he deserves rest too. It would be a better option for her not to get used to the bed linen and get a wonderful breakfast-in-bed prepared for her man who obviously, deserves getting used to the linen. She feels tired and short of sleep but she must wear the best smile to please him. He has obviously been laboring throughout the week for her sake. He approaches her to acquire the one pleasure he must obtain. She can not decline because her religion forbids her to. She must understand her. He doesn't need to . . .  end of story.

And then we raise our voices arguing about how dare they defame Islam?

The mentality of superiority that prevails among men of our societies is a shameful incidence. Professing to be Muslims and wanting our women to be protected from the predatory eyes of other men is good, and we must not be apologetic about it. But suppressing her under the man's nauseating demands, depriving her of education, stealing her right to feel and to express and giving her the sole symbol of being the answer to man's lascivious desires is not good - least of all, something to be proud of.

The Believers, men and women, are protectors one of another: they enjoin what is just, and forbid what is evil: they observe regular prayers, practice regular charity, and obey God and His Messenger. On them will God pour His mercy: for God is Exalted in power, Wise (Quran 9:71 )

Click Here: For more information on Gender Equity in Islam

Saadia Malik is a writer for Renaissance, Islamic Monthly Journal, Pakistan

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Older Comments:
less about the article, more about the comments about the article.

Muslims bristle at any suggestion that there are any problems within an islamic framework. From the 911 terrorists weren't muslim, to a denial of slavery in the Sudan, to a denial of any but happy protected sheltered women in muslim lands...

I would suggest that the increased negativity in the American public towards Islam is *not* because of ignorance. Many have sought out knowledge, the web in particular, and what we've seen and heard *from muslim websites and out of the mouths of muslims* is how we've discovered that Islam (at least fundie style) is joyless, devoid of music, laughter, painting, TV, sports (women only), even children's toys, and certainly freedom, esp for adult women who are eternal minors,totally dependent upon the largess of their male guardians beit even their sons for every aspect of freedoms we take for granted in the West.

Thank you for the chance.
I want to say that I have found your letter quite a lot influenced by western modernism. Here we can see two scenarios where women are suppressed (traditional point of view) and where women are equal (modern point of view). I think both are incorrect. The modern approach is not sourced by Islam, just as the traditional one isn't. Yes, Quran tells us that men are superior to women. (Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allh has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means. Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient (to Allh and to their husbands), and guard in the husband's absence what Allh orders them to guard (e.g. their chastity, their husband's property, etc.). As to those women on whose part you see illconduct, admonish them (first), (next), refuse to share their beds, (and last) beat them (lightly, if it is useful), but if they return to obedience, seek not against them means (of annoyance). Surely, Allh is Ever Most High, Most Great.) [An-Nisa-37]Here, if we are not blindfolded with the prejudices of western civilization, we can see that it is Allah, who says men are superior. Quran also accepts that two women's witnessing is equal to one man's. Is this gender discrimination? To be honest, yes it is. But that is true if Allah does so, not because we, men like it, because he is the one who knows us best. If we take our eyes away from the prejudices of Western modernism and look at women and even ask them about this issue, we will see that Allah has given everybody the position complying with their own character and nature. I think we should not try to acquit ourselves before the prejudices of western modernism and ignore how Allah introduces women to us. On the other hand, neither should we ignore the orders of Allah preventing us from any kind of suppression.
Thank you for your giving the chance to express myself.
Best regards

Well expressed, I am a woman's right advocate. Mind you only for what is our right as a Muslim woman. Proud to be one too. Observing the Hijab & being modest in our dealings with non Mahrams is all that we need to care about. definetly our husbands have rights on us ,but so do we. We surely our different but equal. It is our responsibility to follow the Quran & Sunnah of our beloved Prophet Mohd (s). It is our lack of Islamic knowledge as well as practice which has led us into the dark ages. There once was a time when the whole world was in darkness ,but we had the beacon of knowledge,thus light, but during these past 100 yrs we have slowly led ourselves into the horrible state we are in. Let us wake up from our deep slumber Inshallah. Jazakallah for your comments. Nilofer

i think all this is absolutly wright, the media always points the finger at islam(Islam did this Islam did that!)

I live around many Muslims and the men are all mean to me. I'm not rude to them. I do dress modestly. They all just seem like they are entitled to kings or something. Some do not even address me when they are taking my money for an item I purchase. Another accused me of lying about paying my parking on campus. This all happened in Houston, Texas and still does to date. I cannot tell if they resent me for being blonde haired and blue eyed or if they are plotting. No one deems them as friendly here. Not a very inviting avenue for Islam since we don't see the "love". Unless you call love dictatorship as one author did on this site.

the article "men choking the faith" was well done. it is the sad truth how many muslims superficially claim to be muslims and yet behave in a condradictory manner. it is because of these poeple that so many non-muslims have percieved such a negative image of islam. before we (muslims) can educate non-muslims as per islam, we must first educate ourselves. if we are not educated then we are ignorant and ignorance is wrong.

I think that it is refreshing that a women doesn't have to go to work. If I want to I have that choice but it is not a neccesity, for me, to do so.

I find it hard to juggle children, work and then come home and try to juggle everything that goes on, in the home. ie: cooking, cleaning, laundry (never ending), school work, etc....

I think that if more men asked the women in their lives, they would agree with me. Many women want to stay home but are unable to because of the financial responsiblity that is also thrown, on them to.

I am thankfull that I have the ability to take my daughter to a gym class, stay to play with her and watch her, as she delights in her accomplishments. I am thankfull that I can stop by my sons schools, who are teenagers and still be involved in their lives.

well i am sorry you think that way
but may i ask are you some islamic scholar who interperates the Quran if so i am sorry but you are doing a very lousy job
there are many ways in interperating the Quran
Islam does not forbid a women to step outside
a women is allowed to vote
a women is allowed to be educated
a women has all the rights a man has but only a few are limited
i say in america women had to fight to get thier right to vote while in Islam the right was alreday there.
The highest majority of people convering to Islam are women becuase islam offers more rights than any other religion.
take some other religion for example thier rights really aren't stated and then so how can you interperate how they should be put into practice

i say what garbage is this
if you think this is right i say get your priorities checked
or get some new conections on this subject
to read is one thing
but to interperat or understand is another

Islam has the most highest respact for woman and they are equal to men .infront of GOD.and also the father and husband dute to help and support his sister or wife,However whats the west sees and find is the traible old life style that the moslems are going to back to live by.which it cost the islamic fiath and real moslems a tromandes miss giving about the tretment of the woman in Islam.I do belive as a moslem that 99%of what we see and read on the westren media is a bias,and also a lie,buy showing the woman of afganstan,does not mean that all moslem womans live likethat.or they dont educate them selves,also the fialer of the moslems who /are the citizen of the west dont represent Islam.the right way,and buy doing unjustes to oure fiath and our given GOD right to cary on the true message of the prophet,peace beeupon him.we all moslems .are to blame for our own fialer of not addressing the issue,and also to communciate with our falow moslems els wear.we are living in america,but we nevertook it on oure selves to invite any amercian familes to our homes,or have establish an exchanage send some of the young mined of the amercian to our parts of the they become much better understanding to our religion and way of life,also please remamber .that the different cultures who invited the islamic life ,did bring on with them new tradations .and a new culuters.this should be also addres in these days ,as ramadan approching us .I hope that think well chanage to the better for all moslems .and the rest of the world,I pray to help us ,and you .may you and your familey have a very happy holiday season.may GOD bless you. waslam alykuom.


What makes this article particularly nauseating is its indiscriminate
use of male stereotypes. I do not accept that the dignity of men (even with regard to their wives) has so hopelessly dwindled. Admittedly there are problems, but I would hope that our approach to discussing solutions would extend beyond an adolescent viewpoint. Two words to the author: grow up.



The main article was not clear as mush as the article about more information on Gender Equality was. In any case it was good to read and renew what we ought to know all the time and practice. Thank you to IslamiCity and the writer of both articles. Allah-hafiz.

Alhamdulillah Sister!! Maybe insha'Allah this will get through to the men of educated societies!!! I understand those living in rural areas of undeveloped areas..b/c what else are they taught..but educated men..c''s their responsiblity to treat their women better!!

Assalam alaykum w/w,
After going through the article which was sent to me by a friend i think i really agree with the title "men choking the faith".
The reason being that though i know that the primary duty of the woman is in her home but i also know that islam does not deny her the opportunity of doing other things like working as long as it does not affect her primary assignment adversely.
Moreover, in the increasingly secular world we are in muslims need women to take up certain professions like medicine,education in order to help the ummah or do we expect that male doctors will continue to treat our women? It is clearly compulsory on the ummah to train and educate the women or how else is she supposed to raise her children? What you don't have, you can't give says an arab poet. I think that in summary shows the importance of educating women.
As well women should not not under the guise of seeking education or jobs neglect their duties in the homes as mothers , wives or daughters. In my own view the downward slide in the morality of the people is an indication of the failure of the the family.
May Allah guide us all aright.
Wassalam alaykum w/w.

Those who objected that the article did not portray reality are missing the point: the article DOES reflect (and satirize) the "ideal Islamic" family life outlined numerous books and pamphlets written for Muslim women by various Maulanas and Shaikhs. The story of how Umm Sulaym (r.a.) did not inform her husband of the death of their son until the next day is used to tell women that a good Muslim wife will always give priority to her husband's comfort, even at the cost of her own emotional needs. Such writers do not consider the question of how men should go about fulfilling their wives' emotional needs; they are too busy explaining how, if sajdah were permissible before a human being, wives should bow before their husbands. This conception of marital relationships give women a constant feeling of guilt and hinders them interacting with their husbands as fellow human beings, and encourages men to demand service rather than cooperate with their wives for the benefit of the family as a whole. Funny how it is that women's emotions are used by such conservative writers to disqualify women from working or ruling, but no attention is given to meeting their emotional needs within marriage.

Trust me what u have penned is just the tip of an iceberg!! The treatment to women by muslim men is worse. I reside in Aligarh in a locality inhabited by educated muslims. mong the neighbours-one on left is a phd and enjoyed beating his wife, see him always indulging in Dhikr and nawafil, next to him is a professor in Geography department who beats his wife ( beautiful one) to pulp every now and then, third to our right is very recently deprived of the pleasure of beating as the man succumbed to cancer, sixty degrees to us is another brute( young man ) who beats his wife, I know an IAS officer in calcutta who prohibits his wife's visit to he parents. One word that describes men's attitude is SICK.


Thank you and congratulations for a wonderfully written piece. Every sentence stike a chord in my mind. We need more of this kind of writing around. May Allah bless you.

IN the name of Allah
I would just like to appreciate because of sending email and informing me about Islam and the believers of Allah.
with best wishes

I don't see any good reason behind attacking Islam by talking about women's issues. I can talk about the western the same way. The conclusion is, women are the way they are because men want them to be this way. Either to hide and be owned by them or to show to the public. But in the eastern countries the culture and the customs are deeply involved in the life so that it gets hard to seperate them. But if people try hard to stick to the Kora'an and Sunnah, they follow the right path.


The responsibilities of a lady in Islam is a very important one, raising children, guiding them rightly at right juncture is very important otherwise they will be lost, managing house affairs, these are all need a lady to be more educated so that she could do her job more appropriately. This is a most difficult assignment compare to a lady in a job (it may be any job simple to high level managerial post).

A peaceful house with a firm loving atmosphere is very important in Islamic point of view. Also it desirable for a husband to be in house after his job than wandering here & there or opting a club life.

We may have lots of problems created by not following Islam, that need to be rectified, but if we take American life as a standard and compare ourselves then surely we will commit mistakes. The society is a center of all kinds of anti human anti social acvities, their own thinkers are warning them of worst consiquences and very shortly we will have most of the common people criticising and hating their life system, any civilisation will take some time to demolish under their own weight. 100/200 years is a short time for civilisations.

Anyway it is high time for Muslims to invite all the people of the wold to Islam, we have to be well wishers of all the humanity as we belong to Adam and it is our prime duty. Our struggle should be based on salvation in the hereafter, if it is achieved with (better/worstly) worldly life then we are succesful, if a sucees in hereafter is lost means eveything is lost. Let Allah guide us righteous way of life, Ameen.

As Salaamu Aliakum

Afifa it is a good thing you are in America, for if you were in Saudi you would not be allowed to drive a car. If you were in some parts of Yemen and Afganistan you would not only have to work but have to give your earnings to your husband. If you were in some parts of Pakistan and India you would have to marry who ever your family(male memebers) selected and if you did not you could be killed as an honor killing. If you were in some parts of Africa you would suffer genital mutilation. Or you would need four witnesses to prove rape. Let's face it in someplaces women in Islam are looked upon as second class. Just look at the comments of those men who think that women are not as smart as men. This is the same stupid argument put forward by whites in this country about Blacks. No where does Allah say women are not as smart as men! And men are given a measure of superiorty only because they provide for their spouses and their strength is given to protect not to enslave. It is time we wake up and realise and admit that we Muslims are not practicing as we should for if we were, 2/3s of the worlds refugees would not be Muslim. We would not have Muslims killing other Muslims just because they are from a different country. Palistine where once lived 6 million Muslims and 60,000 Jews would not now be in the hands of the Jews. We would not people killing innocents in the name of Islam with car bombs,nor would we be trying to establish Islamic states with terror. There would not be US bases in Qatar,Jordan,and Saudi about to be used on a Muslim no matter how despicable he is instead Muslims would have handled the problem themselfs. Muslim women during the time of the Prophet were wives,mothers,warriors,religous scholars,teachers. Again I ask you brothers would you rather have your wife attended by a male doctor or a believing woman. Islam was spread by the good behaviour of its followers.Let us stop dening our mistakes and correct them

Assalam Alaikum,

so true! this is how our society is..hmm! majority
InshAllah this wont happen in my house n my muslim brothers too.. May Allah guide us!

Allah HAfiz

i did not like your article about the muslim house wife one bit !!!! i grew up in america and wasnt raised around any oppressed women as the author says iam a mother of 4 and i do so much for my volunteer work at my childrens school and i go everywhere i want to go with the blessings of my husband my house is clean and i have a brand new car and my kids and i have top of the line everything where does she get off saying that women in islam are not allowed to have a life she must be talking to the wrong women !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!i was truly disappointed that your magazine would publish a stupid book!!!!!!this author needs to find women who are happy in their lives and stop looking for the bad in islam.!!!!!!!!!!!!

I agree with much of what has been said in this peice, But I would like to add that it is our Muslims faults not only men but also women. Alhamdulillah there are many women who practice Islam properly, but living int the west, I cannot say the majority are. Everything should be judged by two sides. I completely agree that men have distorted the true essance of Islam and have interpreted rules to put women down. Islam will always be judged by the people. The fact of the matter is that none of us are following Islam properly that is why people are attacking Islam. We as a nation must not commit the smae mistakes as the Jews have done. We must hold strong to our faith and practice it properly. There will be no messenger to come help us anymore like the Jews were sent Jesus. our beloved Prophet Muhammad was the last. We need to change as Muslims to let the world know what Islam really is.

i had no idea that some Muslim women in America are treated that awfully. I have never seen it myself because in our masjid, the men and women stay in seperate rooms during prayers etc. Most of the time in our community married couples rarely interact in public and if they do, nothing bad happens between them.
Inshallah, men will realize women have feelings and are HUMAN BEINGS and are actually MORE considerate than men. Women, if anything should be the higher sex. (not that im saying they are but if it should be one is higher, why the men?)
I do hope in the future these horrible sexist men will be nicer to their wives who do so much for them.

I hope this not the equivalent of Womens Liberation Movement in the Muslim culture. Also I don't think Muslim Women's lives are as bleak as portrayed in the article. The fact of the matter simply is that Men and Women are not equal. Women do not have the same mental or physical powers as men do. Probably that is why surah Baqarah says "------And women shall have rights similar to the rights against them, according to what is equitable; but men have a degree (of advantage) over them. And Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise."

This is an excellent article, it should be read by Imams in all mosques...I am a convert and I see this as a real hinderance to more women converting. This is an improtant issue whenever I must explain that my conversion is not into a world like this....My husband is not like this at all...Alhamdulliah

Send in this address all islamic teachings for muslim woman.

I think this is such a retarded view of women in Islam and i think the author needs to re-evaluate her faith. She sounds like a feminist and we don't need these so-called feminists to give us our rights when our Lord who created us has given us our rights. May Allah bless us with pious spouses who will give us our rights as ordained. I think the author should go to some study circles and gain some true knowledge of Islam instead of blaming Islam for what the men around her do or of what she must have heard. This is ridiculous and please sisters, before you go around writing books about women...and trying to feel liberated in the process , think again of what you can do to gain the pleasure of Almighty Allah in dunya and akhirah. This would be more beneficial instead of whining about women's rights till the world's end. jazakallah

I think that position of the house wife is better then leting her to go to work and let her childern at kindygarden or after school care center for eight to ten houres.
Or to be used as sex sample on hardwere tractor.
You are right about men should change thier hapets,and if every one of us follow the way of the prophetlife and the way he treat his wives.

Good depiction of Muslim society, we need more not less discussions on such issues. For some it will be too close for comfort so what, good work sister.

Well said. I also want to add that it is pretty difficult to argue that we have "gender equality" in Islam when even at the Masjid women are shunted into a little room with nothing in it but a window where we can apparently be seen by the men in the other room but we can't see anything through our side and the speaker's voice is piped in over a PA speaker. There is nothing "protective" about this, it is shunning and demeaning. I can hear the chorus of men now saying "You go to Masjid for Allah(swt)." Indeed I do, because I certainly wouldn't endure this for any other reason. But should Masjid be a place where women are unwelcome (unless it's something where we are supposed to bring food, of course), such that they must go "for the sake of Allah(swt)" but in doing so, must be made to feel unwelcome there?

When the Prophet, peace be upon him, articulated the rights and responsibilities of men and women, he was, in effect, a revoluntary in support of women. The ayah of the Quran and the actions of Rasoullah,saws, clearly indicate the both Islam and Our Prophet value women and hold them in high esteem.

Its unfortunate that some have used Islam as a veiled excuse for misogyny. No where can you find authentic direction that makes women "less then" full participants in all phases of life.

Men who would treat women as chattel and slaves, and those who fear that sisters in the workplace and community will weaken Islam and their deen, need only see the women of the Companions time to see women alive, strong and contributing, both at home and in community.

As a educated professional American revert, I see no inconsistency with being an outspoken, articulate professional who leads organizations, and issues and the role I have as a Muslim woman.

All who know me have come to see my colorful hijabs and my modest dress together with my laughter,intelligence, and compassion as a true model of Islam. Inshaa allah I encourage dialogue and dispel fear of "those" people...since I am both an educator and one of "those" people.

Wome are half our community and more than half the world. It's we who shape our communities and homes. I, for one, will continue to be a "good" Muslim woman, both in my private life and public image. I will continue to work for the right and appropriate of active, involved sisters..

.....And Allah Knows best

Sakeena, TX


As Salaamu Alaikum

And what are we to do? Change the speech of Allaah and His Rasool, saw? Are we to change that which Allaah has ordained so you the women can do what? Go out in our stead and provide?
To be molested and assaulted by the mores of this society?

It is not enough that you are provided for?
Is it not enough of love what Allaah and His Messenger has decreed for the man and the woman?

What do you want from us? Now you want to take off the hijab, put on makeup, wear perfume? Your place is in the home and not in the market. You are allowed to get an education, to increase your knowledge of Islaam to benefit yourself in this life and the next.

Yet it is not enough. Your equality will destroy the home, the family and society. Do you think the world is cookies and milk for the muslim man whom tries to fear Allaah and obey His Rasool?
Many modernists want to change the deen of Allaah.

The men cut their beards, are not attached to the Masjid. The women have discarded the hijab and now want to compete with the kuffar for the love of the dunya. All you intellectualism will not change the reality of the destruction of the Islaamic family and home. We need our wives to love Allaah and His Sunnah, and the Sunnah of His Messenger, more than they love the glitter of this life.

No, they are not cattle to be pinned up during the day and let out to feed at night. I have seen the equality you speak of. And I must ask is their success in this dunya or their desire to obtain what Allaah has given to the man will draw them closer to the fire or closer to jennah?


Isnt it a shame that our men specially in the subcontinent mainly in India and Pakistan treat their wives as illustrated in this article and take them for granted.But dont we think that poverty lack of education in both academic and islamic is also a major factor here for their this unfair behaviour .Maybe something needs to be done about this on the ground like setting up of schools where our fellow brothers could recieve free academic & islamic education .

I'm kind of tired of these people writing all thats wrong with the Muslim world. If she is so upset why doesn't she give a class on Holy Quran and authentic hadith? If more women were knowledgeble about Islam then we would have a whole lot less problems. It's because of our reliance on western culture and other cultures that we have so many problems. We should rely on Allah and know that our religion is perfect but we are not perfect, so to be better we should follow this religion as closely as possible!!!
I love staying at home and making my home beautiful, taking care of my family!! The only example I want my husband to follow is the Prophets peace be upon him.

2:120- Never will the Jews nor the Christians be pleased with you till you follow their religion....
3:186-............. and you shall hear much that will grieve you from those who received the scriptures before you and from those who ascribe partners to Allah.........

These days we seem to bother much about what the westerns are saying and how to react to that. It's like soul searching. Too bad, we forgot that we are blessed with the greatest and the final revealation made to the mankind- the Qur'aan. This is where our guidance is.
I don't agree with the author that Muslim men treat their wives as a lesser creation. Islam never taught us that. If someone thinks of women as a lesser creation this would be corruption of our mind by the western beliefs.
Who says homemaking is not a dignified work. We tend to think that by keeping our wives as homemakers we are relegating them to something inferior. We didn't learn it from Qur'aan.The western society taught us so.
We don't boast of the fact even in the western world Muslim children are not engulfed with abuse of drug. That's because there is a full time mom looking after them.
We don't boast of the fact Muslims teens in America has got the lowest crime rate of any ethnicity. Why? The great mom is there.
The western society has too many things to learn from a model Muslim society. They will know how to cure their ills.
I don't agree with authors whining about lack of western style companionship in marriage. We look into something much deeper. It's about mutual trust and dependancy. As Muslims we are proud that marriage for us is a enduring relationship. And we don't go for partner hunting every few years. There is mating season for animals. It's not meant for mankind.
The only way I can agree with the author is the attitude of those Muslim men who are muslim by faith only. We must put into practice what our faith is. That's what Qur'an tells us to do.
Let's stop arguing, and be guided by Qur'aan.

I agree with the equality of med and women. Being from America and being a new Muslim, the only thing that disturbs me is the section in the Quran that states that women who have been unchaste or unfaithful can be beaten. I cannot believe that Allah would condone any abuse like this. This seems to be more of a cultural practice than the word of Allah. Maybe I am wrong. Women are the ones who give birth to Prophets and Kings. We need to honor them as Allah's wonderful creation for us men. I do not believe in the submission of the woman. My wife does things for me and I do things out of love for her. We are equal. Alhamdulilah!

i really found the article very good, here in india many muslim gals dont get the chance for proper education. infact the gals are not allowed to study and taught to work at home, even if she is a good student.
i find all this very cruel.
when you talk abt equality, give the muslim gals the space to express, their inteeligence their true worth.
without which life will have no charm for the females.
i loved your article, i hope it provides sense to those who discourage females and suppress the females in the name of islam, while islam promotes education, its value and importance.

knowledge is power.
allah hafiz

LATIF said:
i read this is true in very few cases.
in L.A. OR ANY OTher city in usa muslim women are
having best of both worlds.most of them do not have to go to work and spend their free time watching ptv,ztv or other asian tv 24 hour programs or gossip or go shopping.while men are hard at work dealing with current hostile atmosphere .moreover women don,t have to deal with
in-laws and mother -in-laws rivalry which is prevalant in our asian societies.most of muslim women drive and that is a blessing for us men that
we don,t have to worry about shopping or taking kids to schools or other look in any
shopping mall and you see hijab wearing women doing shopping etc so the writer is not correct in
saying that women are confined in their homes.

Islam teaches us to be kind to women as The Rasul have said "The best of you is the best to his family (wife) ..." Also we see in the next example

"Ibn Abbas reported that a girl came to the Messenger of God, Muhammad, and she reported that her father had forced her to marry without her consent. The Messenger of God gave her the choice ...(between accepting the marriage or invalidating it). "(Ahmad, Hadeeth no. 2469). In another version, the girl said: "Actually I accept this marriage but I wanted to let women know that parents have no right to force a husband on them." [Ibn Majah] 3. The husband is responsible for the maintenance, protection, and overall headship of the family (qiwamah) within the framework of consultation and kindness. The mutual dependency and complementary of the roles of males and females does not mean "subservience" by either party to the other. Prophet Muhammad helped in household chores in spite of his busy schedule.

here a girl spoke up to the prophet herself so that parents know they have no right to force her to get married.So when are the muslimah going to express themselves and speak up???

i also beleive that there is equality in Islam but i wanna know about the attitude of Saudi Arabian men with women cos i have read in many books about their cruelty with them which is defaming Islam but i also beleive this is only to defame Islam but if u can issue a report to me about Saudi Arabian men

How very true. In the time of the prophet women will go up to the prophet and address him directly, while in the present women are merely objects to be manipulated by those men who still think that women should not only not be seen but also not be heard. For religion which has the Holy book addressing women explicitly, granted inheritance and decreed the status of gender equality, Islam has been usurped by paternalistic scholars who have forgotten the values of the time of the prophet whilst bringing back the the jahilliyyah values. Not many men will stand up for what's right, for to do so would only bringing the charges of deviance and astray from the tenets of Islam.

Assalamualikum wt.wb.
Dear Ms Saadia Malik,
I beg to differ. On the contrary, I believe that Islam enjoins equal status to woman especially my dearest wife. As an illustration...
After almost ten years of marriage and my wife had to be retrenched after working for many years, she felt then that she deserved a break. Well a break from the daily routine of working from 9 to 5 in a multinational company. I obliged but we have to consider our two kids who are now 7 and 6 years old.She said she prefer to stay at home to look after the kids than working. No regrets. In fact she enjoys every minute of her stay at home. Now come the reality of life.
Presently, I'm completing my postgraduate thesis in the Master of Management programme. Do you know something, I enrolled my wife into the same university since she missed her chance when she was much younger. Both of us are studying and my two kids are school going.
Housework,laundry,meals and quality time spend on our kids are all divided equally. Of course the difficult part will be when there is exam and term paper to complete. Nonetheless, with frank communication, sincerity and a common goal towards achieving blessing from Allah in our daily ibadah, insyallah we live in peace and harmony.
As a muslim husband, I believe my wife has to be given her due rights to increase her knowledge in the field that is enjoined by Islam. For my wife's case, she loves Arabic and Dakwah. Hence the pursuit of excellence in the university is not for worldly gain but for her life in the Hereafter.
Any regret on my part as a Muslim husband. A definite no. What we need to instill in our heart as a married couple is to constantly communicate with our spouse in every aspect of our life. No secrets. Only through sincere comments,feedback or grievances that each party need to address will there be a way to solve marital problems they do exist.
Finally. insyallah I will consistently allow my wife to be given her due rights as a Musli

Well, and honestly, written. Just for the record, I, myself, am a devote Christian, with no intentions of becoming otherwise. That aside, I appreciated your honest appraisal of the situations of some women in Islamic households. This is a problem that, while it may unfairly represent the great religion of Islam, does regretfully exist in some households and regions who unfortunately use Islam as a pretext for keeping women in a state of near servitude. As for your observation about "wanting our women to be protected from the predatory eyes of other men is good," only a foolish or unreasonable person could fault you for wanting to do that.

Allah swa tells us to stay in the home and not to display ourselves like in the days of jahiliyah. So you have to take this up with him.
But as for the cooking and cleanning. I work inside my home doing hair and other deeds for the sisters....I do leave the house when go grocery shopping, etc. But not to hang out...only in the sister's Halacah. Sisters have a tendency to gossip if the conversation is not about Allah. But we manage to have a good time. Barbeques, Aqika's, Walimahs, etc. We are not oppressed unless we want to be. Allah only tells us to protect our husbands property and be chase while he is away. The prophet sws used to serve his wives and when it was time for salat, he left. This is a western way of thinking (ie, the wife does all the cooking and cleanning). My husband actually told me it was Wajab for me to cook. I told him I want to see proof. The mothers of the believers had servants, where's mine. This is a man's world but I demand my rightful respect and all sisters should, we deserve it. It's not easy bearing children, working to help your husband make ends meet (if you wish) and cooking, cleanning and picking up his messes all day - We need a break and Allah knows best and he is most merciful.

Et apres on se plaint et levons nos voix en contestant la faon dont les autres diffament l'Islam?

La mentalit de la supriorit qui rgne parmi les hommes de nos socits est une situation honteuse. Professer d'tre des musulmans et vouloir que nos femmes soient protges contre les yeux prdateurs d'autres hommes c'est bien, et nous ne devons des d'excuses a qui que ce soit sur ce sujet. Mais la suppression des
femmes sous les exigences nausabondes de l'homme, la priver de l'ducation, de son droit et ses sentimements et d'expression et lui donner le symbole unique d'tre la rponse aux dsirs lascifs de l'homme n'est pas bien -le moindre qu'on puisse dire, il n'y a de quoi tre

Les croyants et les croyantes sont allis les uns des autres. Ils commandent le convenable, interdisent le blmable accomplissent la Salt, acquittent la Zakat et obissent Allah et Son messager. Voil ceux auxquels Allah fera misricorde, car Allah est Puissant et Sage. Coran -- At-Tauba Sourate 9 Aya 71

L'pouse ne doit surtout pas demander une heure pour un simple d'entretien, parce que l'Islam encourage que la femme permettre son mari de se dtendre puisqu'videmment il lui fournit la nourriture, les vtements et un abri. Elle n'en a pas besoin et ne devrait pas exiger plus.
Il fait sa part du travail et va au lit. Elle fait sa part du travail et doit aller au lit pour se lever encore tt le matin et prparer le petit djeuner pour le cheri. Pour sur, il a une dure journee devant lui. Le week-end s'approche finalement et elle lui fait bon accueil avec les bras grand ouverts. Une semaine dure, plein de corves la maison et l'action nulle la laisse
puise. Mais alors, il mrite bien aussi du repos. Elle a interet ne pas s'habituer au draps et ne pas s'habituer au petit-dejeuner au lit bien prpar pour son homme qui videmment, mrite de s'habituer au draps lui. Elle se sent fatigue et manque de sommeil mais elle doit montrer le meilleur sourire pour lui plaire.
Il avait videmment travaill tout la semaine dans son intrt a elle. Il l'approche pour acqurir l'un des plaisirs qu'il doit obtenir. Elle ne peut pas refuser parce que sa religion l'interdit. Elle doit la comprendre. Lui n'a pas besoin de comprendre sa religion, un point c'est tout.

tant tranger la religion de l'Islam, je marche dans le village de Jubala - une rgion sous-dveloppe et dont l'ducation est absente. On m'a dit que les habitants sont Musulmans. Je serai facilement men a comprendre que l'Islam est dfini par les coutumes anciennes des tribus de la rgion.

Considrez une autre illustration.

tant en quelque sorte trangere la religion de
l'Islam, j'entre dans la ville de Zameersi - une rgion relativement dveloppe et ou l'ducation est presente. On m'a dit qu'une grande majorit des habitants sont des musulmans. Je comprends qu'ainsi, l'Islam fait parti de l'activit des gents locaux. J'ai t informe que l'Islam est une foi tolrante. Elle accorde le statut gal aux hommes et les femmes et elle encourage la
paix. Mais.

Helas! Mon observation fut oppos toutes les notions prconues. L'Islam n'encourage pas le traitement des femmes dans la similarit parfaite aux hommes. Bien au contraire, en fait. Ma dcouverte se doit une chance d'affiliation avec une famille locale. L'homme se prepare pour le travail. La dame reste la maison. Elle n'est pas cense participer a aucune acticvite
intellectuelle puisque ce n'est pas une option et ne fait pas partie de l''quation. Plutt, elle est cense rester la maison, cuisiner et garder la maison propre. Elle prend une heure ou deux. Puis quoi ? Peut-elle sortir au moins que pour prendre air ? Pas du tout. Sa religion exige d'elle de rester l'intrieur de sa maison et d'attendre l'assidu, l'individu tout mritant de rentrer a la maison. Onze heures dans le bureau et il a gagn le salaire du jour.
Ce serait juste si on lui permettait une ou deux heures avec des copains. Dix heures et il serai temps pour lui de revenir a la maison. Le dner serait prt d'ici l. Srement, c'est deja servi. humainement - ca se comprend quand meme qu'il veuille s'assoupir.

En francais, pour Akhi Mohamed de France.

As the editor cautioned the translation softwares are not perfects. I reviewed/corrected this article to make it comprehensible in french.

Comme l'editeur avait cautioner les softwares de traduction ne sont pas parfaits. J'ai revue/corriger cet article pour le rendre comprehensible en francais

Les Hommes suffocant la Foi

Je me suis souvent senti attristee par la facon dont la mass mdia trangere projecte la condition sociale des femmes sous la bannire de l'Islam. Tout en sachant que l'Islam encourage l'galit parfaite entre les hommes et les femmes, que l'Islam est proclame au monde comme une foi qui deprive les femmes, les emprisonne entre les quatre murs de leurs maisons et alternativement, meprise celles qui placent les pieds en dehors de leur maison. Je me suis donc rendu compte qu'en fait ni la press trangeres ni les non-Musulmans ne doivent tre blms.
Mais qu'il importe aux hommes qui professent l'Islam regarder sous leur peau, dans leur sang avec lequel ils asphyxient le souffle de l'Islam et obstruent la vie hors de lui et qu' en effet, dpeignant l'Islam comme une religion cruelle.

Les hommes d'une autre croyance ne comprendront une autre religion qu'a partir de la manire dont elle est pratiquee par l'autre, parce que tous n'irons pas jusqu'a remonter aux sources originales avec la plus grande dvotion afin d'atteindre le vrai sens de la religion de l'autre.

Considrez l'illustration suivante.

It is really sad, how with a single article you can condemn entire MANkind, for the jihalat of a few. It is granted that there are certain obligations that women have to perform, however, realize, that there are certain obligations that men have to perform as well. The gender roles of women and men as defined in Islam are secondary to the issues and requirements that spouses place on each other. Your article is more of a frustration over boredom than any real critique of men's roles. The scenario you have described actually leaves a lot of freedom to the woman to do what she wants, within the bounds of Islam. Also I would like to know the source of "...Islam enjoins perfect equality between men and women..." Perhaps it is my ignorance, but have not heard/seen this anywhere. Please do not mistake this argument as a justification of oppression. The scenario you described may not 'fit' in your schema of lifestyle, but I assure you, it is an extremely pleasant lifestyle for those who live it and was practiced by founding women of Islam. Perhaps the advent of modern technology makes you say what you say: "...she is supposed to stay at home, cook and keep the house clean. It takes an hour or two..." Perhaps she should throw out all the vacuums, blenders, etc and do it all manually, and then perhaps it will take a little more time, as it did, during the time of our Prophet (p.b.u.h.). The article is poorly written, and only aggravates men (like me) that do not fall into the group you describe. The people that should be reading this article will probably never even see it.

I totally agree with the author. I feel that all people make judgements on other cultures and religions based on what they see the peoples of those cultures and religions do or say. Unfortunately after witnessing the kinds of behaviours prevalent among the muslim community someone always has to say... "but that's not real Islam. The Prophet (saw) never did/said/ such a thing..."
How can we change this. I think by teaching the younger generation about our Prophet's own conduct and the understanding he (saw) brought us we can hope that they will be a better example to the community at large.

i need 2 ask u question it is v important. my father is a bit like the man whom u prtrayd in ur email, i have an urge to go to further education, i have never done anything for him to doubt me, he has forbidden me 2 go 2 university, can i rebel against his decision, please i need this answer with proof if possible.

Islam does not enjoin the treatment of women in perfect likeness to me Generalizing senseless statements such as the one above should not be allowed to be expressed, especially if they originate from persons alien to the relegion of Islam. The alien's 'Discovery' about the treatment of women by muslim men owes itself to the chance affiliation with one family. Can we say that this 'Discovery' is statistically 'Highly Significant'?
I am not condoning the wrongful practices of muslim men in dealing with their women. Making generalized statement is not the way to correct mistakes.

Assalamu Alaikum
Why is that men and women quarrel regarding women's status, rights, do's and don'ts etc. on so many forums? Do you want to fall in line with God Almighty Allah and His Final Prophet's views as in the Holy Qur'an -the words of God and the Hadees (Hadith) Books-The words and deeds of the Prophet (P.B.U.H). It seems that these people want to set a new direction on the question of women and their status? How dare the people teach God and His Prophet -regarding what should the woman do and what should be her status. Why blame Islam? why cry foul? Why don't they talk straight (some pseudo muslim women) and then say that Islam really is discriminatory; God Almighty Allah is unjust and discriminatory against them? Actually those who have disease in their hearts do not want listen to God and His prophet's words. They comment in their own ways.
Now what is that person's age who is posting all such non sensical issues related to women and crying foul with Islam? Did he or she study Islam completely and properly in the unbiased manner? Did they find out that Islam has any thing to discrinate against women? Don't they observe that the jury which decides the case of an accused person, goes through all the aspects of the case with an unbiased attitude and studies all the relevant documents? How come these people accuse God and His Prophet? Are they more just and merciful unto women folk than God? Did God not give them milk in their mother's breast to feed them and then these people observe His laws from the view point of Kafirs and the followers of Satan? How come they abandon God's laws and then start judging from their own view points? Is it not the same way the satan followed and then expelled from Heavenly position. Now if you want to save from the Ever lasting Hell, study Islam unbiasedly, don't fall into the ditch dug by Satan for those who oppose Islam, decide as per God's laws. Taliban were wrong. Islam is not wrong.Muslim men must follow Islamic w

Saadia Malik is dead right in her observation that men are choking the faith.Infact todays muslims have become like the pagans of Hijaz whom they replaced in 7th century AD.And all this has happened because we though outwardly protest about the diffrentiation of religious and worldly matter as the value espoused by the secularist but in truth we practise it in our personal and community life-otherwise we all should have been if not well versed like a religious scholar atleast have working knowledge of Quran and Hadith

mashaAllah, ive been waiting for an article to adress this issue. May Allah swt guide us all to the best of deeds and faith.

Im a girl from Iran and im muslem.I asked for your help for my friend whom is hindu and lives in India,and you replied my mail im so grateful for your attention i thought you will never reply this type of emails but ill pray on ALLAH to bless you all for your attempts to introduce real pure Islam to all the world.
after i recieved your reply i talked to my hindu friend and he was so happy when i said you can help him in this way.but the problem is his parent are very strict hindus and he cant clear this thing to them.
I suppose you had asked about his phone number.His mobile number is : (+91)9811015609
I tell you one thing,that he has gone to a mosque near his house but they havnt allowed him to enter it and they have shouted on him because as you know in India hindus are not allowed to enter the mosques so that he cant go there to convert to Islam also.We dont know what to do and im here in Iran and i cant do much for him but when i was in Delhi in India he used to come with me to JAMA MASJID there and im sure that he loves Islam but the attitude of muslems there isnt proper. I really need your help because now he wants to say his SHAHADAH and he is asking for my help and i dont know what to do.
please help us.
ALLAH bless you all.
a girl from Islamic Republic Of Iran.

So, what does the author trying to say? Change the role Allah gave to women?

The fact is, to each his/her own. Allah ordained that the man should go out to find the means to sustain himself and his family while the woman stays at home to raise their children to be Muslims with real Taqwa (Fear of Allah).

The man is the protector of the woman and children. The woman protects the honor of her husband by protecting her modesty. She is also the protector her husband's house while he is away.

The woman is obliged to fulfill her husband's sexual desire, and the husband is also obliged to fulfill his wife's sexual needs.

In short, in Islam, the role of man and woman are equal but not identical.

"It may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you, and you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows, and you know not." Baqara:216

And Allah knows best

Abdullah Lorenzo

The Women of Medina

I don't believe that this scenerio is a right or clear portrayal of the role of the man and woman in Islam. Islam doesn't forbid a woman to leave her house or work or drive, it is the so called "male dominated" cultures, governments, and societies that misinterepret the religion and assign these roles. Of course the woman is supposed to be curtious and polite and loving to her husband but its her husband's job to do the exact same. Muslims need to comprehend that marriage is an equal effort from both genders in Islam, not the suppression of women.

As Salaamu Alaikum

To my new sister Mary H welcome and peace to you. Don't let a few misguided people chase you from the deen. Know also that among convert or reverts to Islam that most are women almost 3to1 all have come because of the truth of what Islam is and a lot have run into the same nonsence that you have. Don't let it discourage you Allah chooses who he wants for his deen and he choose you. For you and others who are interested go to the following site to find some things of interest It will disturb a lot of Muslim men to find women who think, but it disturbs a lot of men everywhere to find a woman that can think. I believe it has something to do with the jealousy that a lot of men feel that Allah choose women to be the bringers of life. That is why men spend so much time trying to invent or create something. They know that you hold to key to their line being continued and sometimes it makes us act like fools. By the same token women should understand and cherish this great responsibility and burden. But know this it is not all you were meant to do or be. This Ummah can only be successful with the full participation of all of its members. We must stop treating women like second class citizens the civil rights movement in American would have not succeeded if women had just stayed at home and been invisible. Islam places a very great importance on the home, but it was never ment to be all that you can do nor is it to be your problem exclusively. Look to the Prophets homelife he cooked,mended his clothes and took care of children his and others. Women in Islam received rights that women in America wouldn't get for 2000 years and men have since the death of the Prophet tried to take them away. Study the lives of the early women of Islam and you will find judges and religous scholars as well as wives and warriors. To be a Muslim is to be the best human being possible and that always has more than one demension.

As Salaamu Alaikum

Cultural abuses of women do take place. Look at the rape laws in countries like Pakistan,India and Nigeria where to prove rape a woman must have four witnesses.The roles laid out in the Qur'an are not there to limit what one can and cannot do but to lay responsibilty for certain aspects of home life.The example of the Prophets home, where he mended his own clothes and took care of the children along with his wifes. Third he never prohibited women from the mosque. There are hadith in which he says it is better for women to pray at home but as with all hadith the question needs to be asked under what conditions was the statement made. It is a fact that the rights that were given to women by the Qur'an and the Prophet have been erroded ever since and by 600 years after his death they were all gone and the Ummah was in serious decline in spite of it's conquest of other lands. Just think there are places where women cannot vote or own property both of these were given to women long before they got them here in America. Brothers ask yourself if your wife needs a medical exam would you rather she went to man or woman Dr.? And how can she go to a woman if there are none? True there are some lazy women that want nothing more than someone to take care of them but not many. Also no where in the Qur'an or sunnah does it say women may only wear black in public what is does say more or less is that the clothes should be loose fitting. The same holds true for men,but how many follow it. It hurts me to hear men say,my wife will cover or else while he has not beard and only comes to the Mosque on Friday if then. I hurt even more to see women divorced with no education and no skills and the exhusband who is supposed to pay upkeep doesn't. Kadija owned a business Aisha raced camels against the Prophet and was a judge in matters of religion.The first women of Islam were judges,warriors,religous scholars and wifes. Why can't they be that today? Brothers grow up!

As a new Muslim, I can attest to the fact that what is "preached" is not always the reality of what is practiced. Yesterday I wandered into the bookstore of a local mosque, and being new, I wanted some books about prayer. Well, I found one about the salat of women. "Great!" I thought. "Just what I need." Yet as I read, I became more and more discouraged--according to the "rules" in this book, women are not to even be ALLOWED in the masjid! And we are to cover ourselves from head to foot with only room enough for ONE eye to look out to see. Where's the gender equality in that? I am a Western female convert, and talk such as this makes me want to run screaming in the other direction. The teaching of that particular book flies in the face of everything about Islam that attracted me in the first place!

Men and Women are not equal. We are all endowed with spiritual and intellectual gifts. And the healthiest of societies are the ones which capitalize and encourage the contributions of all its members. It is not only a biological fact but a beautiful reality that women have a proclivity towards nurturing the children. And it would be criminal to espouse that men and women should set aside their children's need to have a stay at home parent in the name of a narrow linear understanding of freedom.. It is not an- either or- analogy when it comes to Womens rights in Islam.. What has made motherhood such an unfullfilling role is that women are being overlooked as nothing more then servents in their homes rather then recognized as teachers . Mothers are the teachers. And their talents are not limited to the confines of the home.. They can and must embrace the reality that you can in fact do it all, BUT NOT AT THE SAME TIME.. The problem is in our thinking that being at home is less valuable a contribution, and translating that belief into an attitude which degrades rather then glorifies the role of a woman as teacher and nurturer not as a servent. The role as soul mate and partner not submissive superficial wife. Yes, I blame the men for not making that woman who has elected to choose the noble task of childrearng, feel like an intelligent, vital part of a larger whole. To feel like his work and her work are of equal importance and that they are a team working together , not one for the other.. It is not at all productive to isolate and deprive society of half of its intellectual force in women. For while we may delude ourselves into thinking that we are protecting her body from depraved onlookers, we forget what the cost that isolation can have on her aching soul and fragile thirsty mind..

..Surely, he is on his way and in half an hour food is on the table. As her husband tries to swallow junky food down the throat she entertains him with lame stories of her friends and some other stupid women who have nothing to do but talk. In the follow-up - and being human - it is only understandable that he gets a bit drowsy. Her husband must not react, for Islam enjoins on him to be forgiving and merciful.. ......................"

It is very important nowadays that media strives to present the truth. As Satan and its allies and the likes of pharoh are trying to falsify the truth and paint falsehood as the truth, it becomes extremly important that people bearing the media torch present the right and not just present 'anything' to have some points scored on the 'freedom of speech' record. I consider it a huge responsibility to run mass media and hope that editorial staff of Renaissance should at least read an article before publishing it. We already have plenty of the likes of CNN, so please do not give us another one. Please try to come up with constructive articles instead of uneducated and sarcastic ones. Ask your writers to be comprehensive and have complete information available or at least more than what they currently have before writing anything on a subject. Allah know best and he watches everything.

Here here! Here in Yorkshire you will see for lack of a better word remnants of the 'ghettoised' village -cultures (not that this is a bad thing in itself) directly transposed from the immigrant muslim's country of origin. Unfortunatey this culture to my mind is infected with male chauvanism intolerance and often a totally unislamic feudalistic attitudes. I am glad to have married a devout yet assertive muslim woman- This I can credit to 'urban' and 'western' positive influences we have had to consider in our own minds here almost as 'new' muslims have to.

Consider this illustration:
"Alas! My observance runs averse to all pre-conceived notions. Islam does not enjoin the treatment of men in perfect likeness to women. Quite contrary, in fact. My discovery owes itself to a chance affiliation with a local family. The man sets out to work. The lady of the house stays at home and starts calling wherever she can. She spends hours relaxing and calling her friends while filling up the air with lame talk and fruitless conversations, not to mention the back biting that she is so fond of and a gigantic phone bill that she piles up on her husband every month. She does not want to be involved in any intellectual exhibition since that is not an option on her side of the 'equation'. Rather, she wants to stay at home, enjoy cool air while her husband toils on busy streets of town and over-crowded buses. As the time for lunch draws close, she orders junk food from a local fast food place. She has already become too fat to be attractive to her husband. As it gets milder in temperature she puts on some tight clothes so that she looks taller and not fatter and sets out to spend hard earned money without thinking or without any real need. As she walks down the street she invites chasing eyes that affix their line of sight to her bosoms. Does she mind? Not at all. It takes 2 or 3 hours and she gets back with a couple of shopping bags. Then what? Reading a short passage from the Quran or prayer may be? Not at all. Luckilly she has brought a new Salman khan's movie and it would be a nice pass time. As her husband returns, she greets him with a flurry of complains about how the life is miserable and how she was embarrased by seeing a new, never seen before dress worn by her friend and how much is she deprived of new clothes. Her husband tries to convince her that his income is getting lower and he is already worried. As he gets ready for dinner, he is asked to bring loaves of bread and some gravy from the market.

salam alaikum.
I'm from France and this is the first article I have receiced since I logged in
This article is interesting because it says some realities that many muslims don't want to see.My bad english speaking don't allow me to talk more.
But thank you for this article.
wa salam alaikum

First of all, I would like to say that we should not worry too much about what the pharoh is trying to portray. As the verse in the quran says, "Jews and christians will not be pleased upon you untill you follow their nation's(way)."
The article in question was simply 'pathetic'. The author lacks the maturity to write on Islamic issues. She is just romanticizing and trying to create sympathy on a non-issue. She says that she feels dejected on how western media projects the status of women under the banner of Islam. She is right and almost every Muslims feels that way, but she probably seems to be influenced by their projection of Islam. Have some confidence in you for God sake! Islam has nothing to do with what is going on around us. Whoever the oppressor may be, wheather Men or Women, is to blame and not the religion. If the lady stays at home, that is her choice or may be her husband's, but Islam did not command her or her husband to do that. Blaming Islam for that is not the way to go.
In her 3rd illustration she is close to mocking Islam when she says wife cannot refuse sex even if she is tired. Come on! whats the big deal and why are you making such a big deal about it. You are using such an indirect analogy and even the analogy does not hold. The hadith which says that wife cannot refuse is under normal circumstances and it does not say that whatever may happen to a woman she cannot refuse sex. In essence, author is trying to make a point out of her misunderstanding of the hadith. Otherwise, she would have known better that same Islam forbids having sex when woman is in her period.
It is very important nowadays that media strives to present the truth. As Satan and its allies and the likes of pharoh are trying to falsify the truth and paint falsehood as the truth, it becomes extremly important that people bearing the media torch present the right and not just present 'anything' to have some points scored on the 'freedom of speech' record.

very well written...projects a true picture of many of the muslim households if not all. Islam is the faith that provided rights and priveleges and status for women long before any of the other faiths or the most civilized and indsutrialized countries of the world did and yet we are projected as a religion which supresses the rights of women. however, i also have a point to add to the western media or the people in general need to be educated and made aware of what status islam gives to women and it has to be understood that there are many people in the world who have been practicing and enjoying this equal status. It has to be emphasised that its not all bad but can get better.

NIANG said:
i don't speek englich send me the document in french lanquage

i read your article and found it quite sickening that our religion be portrayed in this way. i myself am a woman and i do work, but i feel i have to reply to this article. women of Islam are to be cherished, they are precious and i am sure that is how it is protrayed in the Qu'ran. i recently heard a lecture on tape by a very religious english born-and-bred man and he said that women are too precious to be sent out to work, they are provided for by the father and brothers then by her husband, there she has the difficult task of teaching her child the right ways of Islam and adhereing to it and so should her husband, and to look after her home so that no stranger has any doubt that this a Muslim family's home. the example in the article is exaggerated, but it does happen....this is because the man is not treading the right footsteps of he comitting to his compulsory Salaats? if not does he perform his Quaza for them when he goes to see his friends? a proper husband would engage in conversation with his wife and seek her opinion in matters concerning them both...whatever happens to him involves her and her family. concerning education, it is not forbidden, but it should be used effectively to spread the RIGHT word of Allah Subha na'tallah. it is true that she cannot refuse his request to bed her but, if he can do that, then im sure he can stay awake at the table or contribute to the mental and psycological growth of the family. Islam is sharing what is Allah's, ie. time, money, etc, He can take away what He wants, when He wants. It will be asked of us, were we a good husband/wife/mother/father.......what kind of a reply can this man give????


HALA FROM U.S.A. said:
Beautifully and articulately written.

I think the article doesnot depicts a complete true picture. Enough has been said on supression. Is not it a time for us to represent both good and bad sides of the issue? I know few people are oppressive and use religion for that. But are all Muslims or Muslim societies like that? Far from it! I lived 28 years in Muslim countries I know many people that don't discriminate between their sons and daughters, husbands that respect their wives a lot, girls/women that are religious and still take part in social activities, etc etc. There are more girls (in ratio) in engineering and medicine fields in Muslims countries than many western countries. Number of women in parliment in Iran are more than many western countries. Come on lets speak the truth. Lets not be apologetic. Lets present the truth in its totality. We should admit that few people oppress women due to cultural influences or wrong understanding of religion. But so many don't! How will talk about those who don't! Have u seen a woman president in USA? Well check this out in Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Turkey! Do you know the %age of girls in medicine in Pakistan? the %age of girls in engineering in Jordan, Egypt and Kuwait! Sister Saadia may be from Lahore ... she just need to do a survey in her hometown to see that so many Muslim, religious Muslims, treat the women very well and affectionately, and women being active at social level too. We need to improve the social structure so that at social level more men and women can participate actively. Admit that we need to talk about the problems but lets not blow it out of proportion, as western media do. It takes far more energies and insightness to present a correct picture. Thanks


Alhamdolilah, My husband and I are Muslims. We treat each other with respect and consideration. We don't have too many expectations of each other except to be faithful and honest with each other. I couldn't ask for a more loving and decent husband. He is The best gift that Allah has ever given to me. He is patient and considerate in every way. I only pray that he is as as pleased with me as I am with him,insha Allah.He never complains about anything so I must be doing something right.

You explained my 13 years of marriage to an arab man to a tee. I was suffocating. We are now Divorced in a (messy way), because he's obviously a better muslim than I, in his opinion. Allahediah all the muslim men. We need more men who really know their deen and don't feel threatened by women doing or demanding more than thier food, clothes and shelter.

My father,may his soul rest in peace,was blessed with four girls and one boy.Actually,the birth of the three other girls was due to Allah first, but also due to seeking the male in the family.
When I look at my family now that we grew old,my sisters are doing so well for themselves since they had to work extremely hard to accomplish their goals ,on the contrary my only brother that I love very much is struggling with the very basics of life cause he was so spoiled growing up.
I truly never blamed my dad who was bright enough to give us an education,but the pressures of our mmuslim society that favors male over female.

Many of us still bask in jahalia of local customs we pretend to be part of Islam. In the same breath we must be patient with the believers and be part of the effort to educate those who are so inclined.

Assalamu Alykum Warahmatullaahe Wabarakatuhu,

Sister Saadia,

You projected a picture of reality, which is in practice in most of the so called muslim countries. Please don't forget that, this is not the true picture or teachings of Islam. We should not relate to Islam our way of so called Islamic life, which is contrary to the true teachings.
May Allah swt bless you for your thoughts and give all of us the true guidance of Islam Inshallah.


Ya Rabbi salli wa salam da'iman abidan ala
habbika kairul qalki kulli hamee.
May Almighty Allah continue to keep us under the umbrella of Islam and may we adhere to the Sunna of Sayedeena Rasooli Akram(salallahu alaihi wa salaam)in all matters.
Never in all my 25 years of being a muslim wife and mother have i felt the way you have expressed in my day to day life of a home maker. although the basis of islam is the the same for all who profess to be muslim each geographical area will reflect the culture of the area which by no means has anything to do with islam.and should be pointed out as such.under developed countries see no need for the high quality of education you may find that in the USA one has to have in order to get a good job to take care of one family.Similiarly it is costumary/culturalfor a man to maintain his family thus there is no need for one's spouse to do anything other than maintain one's home and children this does not mean the husband wishes his wife to be uneducated as you have stated.there religions other than islam which make it apractice for the ladies to be home makers but as i have previously pointed a lot of this is cultural not based upon religion for the bases of religion are always the same.

What utter rubbish. The only thing worse than your warped understanding is the feminisation of Islam.

In Guyana, it is widely practice by most of the Moulanas, Shake and othe practising Muslims. The learned brothers are taking advantages of teh situation to tell the ones who are not educated that they have to isolated thier wifves from the public but them can roam freely. Yet I have to obey the ommand of Allah and practice the sunnah of our Prophet, but they way some of the Moulanas and shake describe the way you shopuld keep your wife I don't agree. I did not read in any part of the Quran that you wife must be covered from her head to her toes. For instance, Guyana is a tropical country and nmost of the time our weather is hot here, unlike the Arab countries, where it is desert, i can understand that they have to covered from head to toes but not in Guyana. i will also capitalise on the way I think Muslim women should dress, once they are covered upto their ankle and upto their sleves, I think that is good enough. I can go on and on. Muslim men needs to wake up and let their wifves me more active in society. Our prophet syas if a boy is courting a girl then he must see her, he must she if she can speak, talk, walk, laught,see etc. then you will tell me that a women must be isolated in Islam. The men are taking advantage on this situation so that they can get to roam freely with other women around. That is reality. this is happening by most learned men in Islam.

Wa Salaam

Thats how it looks from here!!!!!!!!!!!

I think this article brings up a good point- instead of continuously bringing up the American media as not giving a true reflection of Islam, let us look inwards at those issues that make it Possible for the media to broadcasts those images in the first place...

What about our great Islamic traditions of Women Scholars, yes there were many many of us! What about Umm Hani(Mariam)1376-1466 from Cairo, born in the middle of Shaban, scholar, who studied under many masters,one of whom was her grandfather... she was the mother of As-Shafi, Saifuddin Mohammed Hanafi, Younus al-Maliki, and Mansour Hanbali- her sons studied the under schools of law which they came to be known under.

She brought a factory! She was a working woman.

Ibn Hagar wrote a book called Accurately Measuring the Companions of the Prophet (SAW) and he wrote that out of the 12,043 notables amongst the Sahabas 1,551 were women! There were probably many more, but many names we won't know because of the nature of Islamic modesty.

Imam As-Sakhawi in his book mentions 11,691 greatest scholars of his age, not looking at sex, 1,075 were women.

In the 13th and 14th women there were many women scholars. And we can never forget Aisha (RA)!

Ibn Hagar, when he went to Damascus, he only had 4 teachers of Hadith, and they were ALL women.

Women have disappeared as notables and scholars. Why??? Why don't we ask ourselves this question... instead of balming the media... We need to give the right to education back to our women... Knowledge is a duty upon men and women. If we don't educate the women in our homes, how will she teach our children, and how we will have an Ummah that isn't steeped in ignoracne of our way of life?

I do not believe all Muslim men behave in this manner. I can only give you an honest example of myself. A typical day. I have triplet boys and a 7 yr old girl. Wake up for Fajar salaat. Take one of the boys down to my mum. She finishes salaat and looks after him whilst I pray. I get ready for work. Boy 2 wakes up. My parents look after both until my wife gets up, usually an hour later. My wife spends the day with the boys, who are one yr old. They are very hard work. I come home from work. Pray Magrib, help with the boys feeding. Then play with my daughter and do homework together. I help to change the boys nappies, give them milk and put them to sleep. Iknow my wife has had a hard day. So I sleep with 2 of the boys, whilst my wife sleeps with the other. They sleep in different rooms as not to wake each other up. We rarely get more than 6 hours sleep. I do not impose any demands on my wife as I know how hard a day she has. I try to help her as much as I can. The only request I have from her is to keep hold of the kids for 10 mins whist salaat is performed. We try and give our daughter as much time as possible.
Whilst I know exactly where you are coming from, I know many brothers out there do not oppress their wife's. Those who do are either ignorant or have no regards for the mother of their children.
I believe marriage is far more than about having your dinner on the table and fulfilling sexual desires. It is about teamwork, about give and take, it is about getting through life. The bond has to be there. The respect has to be mutual. The trust has to paramount. Above all love has to be there. Love for Allah and his messenger pbuh, love for each other and love for the kids

I cannot agree more withe the two illustrations given here ;but these are some muslims not all.I would ask ,however:why don,t we also give illustrations of other families that live Islam as best as they can.Don,t go far .Look around you and you will surely find many people who give good model of muslim families.So let us be fair and not concentrate on the negative side only.Islam is like a big school or hospital where you have different types of clients.So are all other religions and human communities.

dear brothers
thanks for your time and effort you are givving our great islam
one point i'd like to raise:
islam also considers the capabilities of each sex (the male and the female) that is why i think islam doesn't consider the equality absolute but each has to do what goes with the capabilities God has created in him, otherwise why the prophets where males none of them was a female. because the work of delivering the message of God requires body strength which is in the man more than in the woman.

This is in response to the article "Men choking
faith" by Saadia Malik, emailed to me by

The article has very little information about the
actual status of woman in Islam, with no
references to the Quran or Hadith, and reads
more like the bickering of an illiterate
housewife who finds it a burden to be a wife, a
mother, a caretaker.

The sorry state of affairs described in the
article suits a feminist site better than a
respectable Islamic newsletter like yours.

Even a Hindu woman from the working,
uneducated class in India will have the same
story to share. The problem is social, and not
religious. Dragging in the tenets of Islam into
this eternal debate of men vs. women is
completely unnecessary.

I think it is confused writers like Sadia who
give Islam a bad name by showcasing social
problems as Islamic ones.


It's no use denying Islam oppresses women horribly. Look, the Talibans denied their women folks the right to education in the name of Islam, didn't they? The trouble with Islam is that basically men do not trust women. Muslims think that given half a chance a wife would cuckold her busband. So, before a long trip, he sews up her vulva, leaving a small opening for urine and blood to flow through. What about US and UK, women are treated with respect, they can be anything they desire to be, lawyers, doctors. policewomen, even judges. Surely, risk of cuckoldry always exists, you deal with it when it has happened, not trying to prevent it by barbarous means such as clitridectomy. If a man respects and loves a women, the risk of betrayal would be minimized. Unfortunately, Islam does not promote mutual trust between the sexes and therefore treats women with contempt. I'm surprised Islam exists at all., for it belongs to the deserts of the 7th century, not the 21st. I'll say this : it is impossible for Islam to take a dominant position in the western hemisphere, it can exist only in the peripheral.

I was greatly affected by this article,may be we muslims do all these things un-knowingly or un-intentionally,but it seems to be the need of hour to bring such things to forefront.
may Allah make islamicity a better means for understanding Islam.

I am absolutely convinced that Muslims all over the world are on the wrong path because we have set aside one and the only source that would keep us on the straight path, that is Quran. We have this wonderful book for our guidance, but we run around looking for answers in Hadith and other superstitions, while all the answers are right under our nose. Some of us go around blowing innocent people up in our rage, no matter how justified the rage may be. God tells us in Quran that taking one innocent life is like killing the entire humanity, but we play out our rage than obeying God. There is no substitute for complete obedience to God. Let's forget our parochial and tribal traditions and commit ourselves to God and His book and everything would start falling in place.

Assalamolaikum, my brothers and sisters
I am so happy that someone else is seeing it the way I have seen it. I am a new convert for two years. I came to Islam strickly because Allah (swt) brought me to this wounderful religon. But I am a single sister who has experienced this behaveroir from other sister from other countries thinking that they are better than me. Because I have to be out of the house to support myself and my child. But yet doesn't try to help lift the burden off of me buy helping me to find a husband that will help me and to complete the other half of my deen. But I am the the one wearing my hijab to work and being ridiculed by other people and giving Dawah to these people who don't know Islam by just my actions. While they stay at home and look down on me or any other woman that is out there working because she has to and has no choice. May Allah (swt) have mercy on them when the day of judgements come and they are asked about this. Why they didn't help there neighbour when they were in need. Masalama

Islam is more than blind obediance and servitude. It's followers were once leaders in the age of enlightenment. This should still be the case for men and women. After reading this, I felt hope for the whole of Islam, for Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world and it is one that I hope to be worthy of.
I do believe that the narrow mindset of alot of men who profess to be Muslims is a huge stumbling block on the "path". Historically women in Islam were strong and worked along side their men if necessary to preserve their way of life. The Prophet (PBUH) encouraged his wives if they demonstrated abilities that would further the cause of Islam. Aisha was one wife that took to the battle field. So how can it be said that the women of Islam should be held prisoner in this wonderful religion? I believe that the truth of Islam is being distorted by those who seek to maintain power of the weak...and that is not the way Islam was intended to reign.

As-salaamu'alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu..

Upon reading the article written by Saadia Malik concerning "Gender Equality in Islam," I find many experiences similar to the one's already expressed by her own personal experiences. This issue clearly needs to be addressed and looked at by those who continue to not accept change in the sociological dimension of time. Islam is a very practical religion in its practice for everyday life, but there are many sociological, interpretational,and traditional influences that has shadowed the true "equality" amongst men and women in Islam. The contributions that both men and women make in the world generally should be of import when seeking to maintain the basic structural civilization of the human race Allah has created. These particular contributions should be afforded to the need of acceptance that both men and women have been given the greatest gift of all of Allah's creations...."intelligence," and therefore should be utilized with the principles of Islam attached to the main objective of the betterment of mankind in general. The now present complexed structures of society makes it necessary for all to contribute first and foremost in securing our homelife and then partaking in the community by educating ourselves to the level where our contributions become more diversed and beneficial to the whole.
I would hope the understanding of the times, as it relates to the intent of the roles given to both men and women,would be adhered to without finding fault nor having a feeling of superiority of one over the other because of the differences. It's the differences that make the uniqueness of the faith, practical and rewarding when each role is clearly defined, but at the same time, to appreciate what each as individuals can offer to benefit the whole of mankind.

Thank you for your brave comments. I am a woman who has seen or heard this sad side of the story, but not in my own life, fortunately. I have not been wanting to acknowledge this sad side, because I feel compelled only to comment on the ideal way of life that is available to those who truly follow the "deen" (way). Your comments did not hurt as I expected they would, because you are expressing them out of duty to proclaim what is right and wrong. You told the truth out of love of your religion. It would be good for us to all learn to do so in a similar manner. It brings no shame on the religion. On the contrary. It reflects admirably on our religion when we don't try to "protect" those who in our religion's name do misguided or ignorant things. Thank you for the elegant example.

What an amazingly TRUE article!!!

This is in response to Sadia Malik's article "Men choking the faith". If there are kids in a family and the man in that family makes enough for the house hold to live on, then whats wrong w/the fact that woman stays home.The case she has mentioned in her article is one of rare one, which she elaborated on and tried to show that, that is how all Muslim men control their wives. She is no different than the media that is trying to make all Muslim women look like victims of so called men made Islamic culture. I think she needs to get married and have kids and by being an educated Muslim woman give the perspective of living a life as such and her role in a married life. I think that she could advocate as to what a role does a Muslim woman have in a family w/kids, that a man can not be controlling in such a way that she does not have a life outside the family, that Muslim wemen should be interacting with their community chores should be allowed to drive, be able to take some time off while still being careful of Islamic laws and do not cross them by having such freedom from there husbands and that the men should be respecting there wives in giving them to choose some freedoms for them selves and at the same time men should not go out of the bounds of marriage that are set by Islamic laws. Both should be held responsible for there actions.
I read an article by S.Malik in which she says that "Khatam e Quran" is BIDAA. Bidaa is when you make something a part of Islam and say that, that is how in the religion is done, wher as no body neither the Quran nor the prophet has said any thing about it. My question to her well, the Quran was never compiled in the form of a book for as long as the Prophet lived but,it was done so by the thinking of Omar with the consultation of AbuBakr. Is that Bidaa????

I could not have said any better. This is a very prevalent form of behaviour that is disguised under the banner of 'islamic' beliefs and pratices.

well, i think article is about typicall popular views about woman, it doen't take status of woman in depth. May be these are feelings for woman in some society but overall woman can work, help in earning, get education etc with some restriction in "Sharia'h". I dont think article is really impressing, which presents the views in -ve sense. Afteall its duty to woman to create relaxation for his husband, but this artical presents this all in very -ve sense.

I hear and read many Muslims declaring that Islam does not approve this and Islam does not approve of that, but the reality is that many millions of Muslims believe the opposite. These Muslims do believe that murdering innocent people is justified and women need to be controlled like some kind of animals, or pets.
It is not enough to claim the "Civilized" world Islamic teachings are peaceful and tolerant, you must explain that to the millions of ignorant, illiterate, un-educated masses of Muslims who obviously see things differently than you all do.
As a Non-Muslim, I am now very suspicious of ALL Muslims because I don't see too many Muslims willing to stand-up to the cowardly psychopathic extremists who have taken control of the religion and given it a bad name in the eyes of Non-Muslims.

Have some guts and stand-up to the extremists and quit whining to normally fair minded people in western countries who are now suspicious of any Muslim they now see.
Muslims have to take back their religion and restore its good name. Nobody else can do this for you. You must stand-up to the crazy peopel among you.


I think the article doesnot depicts a complete true picture. Enough has been said on supression. Is not it a time for us to represent both good and bad sides of the issue? I know few people are oppressive and use religion for that. But are all Muslims or Muslim societies like that? Far from it! I lived 28 years in Muslim countries I know many people that don't discriminate between their sons and daughters, husbands that respect their wives a lot, girls/women that are religious and still take part in social activities, etc etc. There are more girls (in ratio) in engineering and medicine fields in Muslims countries than many western countries. Number of women in parliment in Iran are more than many western countries. Come on lets speak the truth. Lets not be apologetic. Lets present the truth in its totality. We should admit that few people oppress women due to cultural influences or wrong understanding of religion. But so many don't! How will talk about those who don't! Have u seen a woman president in USA? Well check this out in Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Turkey! Do you know the %age of girls in medicine in Pakistan? the %age of girls in engineering in Jordan, Egypt and Kuwait! Sister Saadia may be from Lahore ... she just need to do a survey in her hometown to see that so many Muslim, religious Muslims, treat the women very well and affectionately, and women being active at social level too. We need to improve the social structure so that at social level more men and women can participate actively. Admit that we need to talk about the problems but lets not blow it out of proportion, as western media do. It takes far more energies and insightness to present a correct picture. Thanks

Thank you for posting the article on where is equality for women is Islam. As a female muslim I get tired of defending my religion. But people ask where is the equality, where in reality? It is time for the Muslim world to act like Muslims and for the women of Islam to stand up and be accountable and empowered.

I'm not familiar with the situation in Pakistan, which I noticed that the writer is coming from, but if the article is going to be written as a general situation in the islamic society then it's not true nor accurate,
I'm a happily married wife my husband encouraged me to take my masters degree in computer science, his support and kindness sometimes emparesses me when I'm in short of time and effort to clean or cook, he simply accepts that and offers a dinner out, he is very successful at his work, kind with his parents, and my parents as well.

among all my relatives and friends I only know one case where her husband does not treat her well.
I consider this a major success,
I don't think we should drag ourselves behind those who are attacking Islam, by pointing to examples that are existing in all socities.
I sincerly beleive the muslim woman is the most fortunate woman in all aspects, she has a secure home, a devoted husband, who would always be there for her support and protection.
As humans we tend to through the blame on our parteners and find ourselves as innocent as lame.
Allah says in the Quran (the meaning)
Nor can goodness and Evil be equal. Repel (Evil) with what is better: Then will he between whom and thee was hatred become as it were thy friend and intimate!"41:34

If all of us put this verse from the Quran in front of our eyes I don't think problems would ever exist inside Muslim comunity or with Muslims and others
if both husband and wife, reflect upon this verse all of these problems will vanish and instead, love, devotion, and happiness will be lived.

Thank you for your comments on gender equity among Muslims. After reading numerous articles and books by women unhappy with their status as "lesser humans," it is hopeful that people are questioning the rightiousness of that role.

Masha'Allah,Saadia, your piece on how ignorant muslim men are, is interesting reading. it was to eschew such position that the Prophet(saw)adviced muslims to seek knowledge. i commend you highly and may Allah reward you abundantly.i also wish to suggest when next you are writing on issue like this to suggest ways of overcoming the far as i'm concern the main problem is lack of islamic education and being sentimental about islam.the other problem is mixing of cultures. majority of muslims fail to realise that islam is a complete culture and any attempt to mix it up with any other culture could only produce very negative results. in other words you are either a muslim or something else but not both at the same time.

i would also like to point out that islam is not a religion for the ignorant.because the first verse revealed to the Prophet of islam was 'read'. so the sickness in every islamic nation is lack of knowledge on the practical application of islam. i wholehearted agree with you that 'we' portray islam in a bad way 'cos of ignorance.

Insha'Allah, Allah's promise will be fulfilled, which ever route we take, time will come when everyone will embrace islam.and dear sister please try to be soft when writing next time so that the ignorant would be geared to seek knowledge on how to practise islam.


As-salaam wa 'alaikam: Traditions and customs can
sometimes alter the religion. Employ our Brothers and Sisters to return to the basics of the Quran, and trying to alter it for our convenience, i.e.
the Quran does not tell you to cover your hair...
Astagh-firullah! Sister Khadijah (R.A.) was a
business woman... Sister Aisha (R.A.) lead wars.
The Quran encites us to think, ponder. We've become so... complacent.

Assalam Alaikum
Thank you sister for your excellent article.
The Verse of Holy Qur'an at the end of your article tells us great deal about our role as the two pillars of Islamic Society.The Believers, men and women, are protectors one of another: they enjoin what is just, and forbid what is evil: they observe regular prayers, practice regular charity, and obey God and His Messenger. On them will God pour His mercy: for God is Exalted in power, Wise (Quran 9:71 )

Present day muslim leaders/rulers either tend to be more corrupt than non muslim leaders when it comes to women's affairs (the secular leaders) or more stricter and unwise (example Taliban) than the Sahaba Kiram and the 4 Islamic Rightly Guided Caliphs (Khalifas) who ruled after Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
The problem is either our rulers are not interested in implementing the Islamic Laws or when they want to do it, they are very tight (like Taliban) and kill women and destroy them emotionally as well.
We have to treat women like the Prophet did (peace be upon him). There is no other way.

As Salaam Alaikum,
Unfortunately the trouble with us muslims is that we have been pyschologically brainwashed and now have developed a inferiority complex. Now our main criteria is that instead of pleasing Allah(SWT), we are more concerned about making our deen more pleasing to the eyes of west. We are more concerned about the image of Islam. Who are trying to impress here? What is this a popularity contest? No matter what image you show or potray, they will for sure look at the negative.
It is men choking Islam, it is people who try to be the "apologists". It is you and me, who are not following Islam to the fullest, who are responsible. We have abandoned education, deen and we are reaping what we have sowed.
The picture the writer is trying to paint of intellectually repressed woman is wrong? Does she know that, in a poor household, the woman is more concerned about the food on the table rather than being "intellectually" enlightned.
Education part is done before the marriage not during marriage. How she and her husband interact, is the result of culture not religion. That's why her scenario stands true in the rural regions of all developing countries.
Equality between has never been there or will be. Allah (SWT) created Eve from Adam. How can something thats created from something both be equal? We each have our responsibilies, that we each should try to accomplish to the best of our ability.

You are right, there is definitely no equality in
the treatment of women in most countries that
"profess" to be Islamic.
However in no way can one blame Islam for
this. Lets take an example, if a man is sick
and goes to the Doctor, gets a prescription for
medication that will cure his disease, but he
does not follow the instructions as they were
given, instead he takes the medicine at the
wrong time, or takes one pill instead of two. or
he stops taking it before the complete course
is over, obviously he will not get the results he
was hoping for, can you blame the Doctor for
Similarly, if we as Muslims, especially in the
case of men take some of the Quran and
Hadeeth and follow it while ignoring the rest,
how then can we blame Islam.
So my sister, I do believe that we can raise
our voice and say "how dare they defame
As for men mistreating women and being
insensitive, I do believe this is a phenomenan
prevalent even in Western Society where there
"liberated" women.

Bismillah Arhaman Alrahim.
Alhumdolilah to be a muslim.this issue has been discussed many times and in all ages how islam deal with the equality of man and woman.and much has been said about it.i did find myself confused at times with this subject, not because i doubt the linings about it in islam but rather because of my own fault at not knowing the issue well from it's islamic perspective or simply call it my **ignorance regarding the issue**.and have finally come to a set of rules to look at it and advise it to those brothers and sisters who unfortunately and ultimately blame islam for it,consciouly or unconsciouly as it's root cause.First for sisters,with all due respect, that they should not look at this from men point of view or the way they act in this regard as how they treat their women but rather should make a clear understanding that, that person may not very well be performing his duties as a good muslim,which is the case in majority,thus victimizing islam in this situation will be a mistake made in one's own behalf.
Another way to deal with this is to understand the fact that if one claim that he/she is a good believer then their duty is to follow the principal of islam as a **whole package** rather try fixing it for one's need as it will indeed cause the chaos we all muslims has fallen into today, which is instead to see how we can adopt islam but to how can islam adopt us.Islam has perfectly outlined for equality in both men and women and that all these teachings should be simply realized,institutionalized and socialized.may Allah bless us with the best understandings of this perfect way of life as He has blessed our souls with as born muslims and make it light for other to Him through our acting upon it.Amin.

As Salaamu Aliakum

Alas the sister writing this article is correct. Cultural prejudices have made women slaves in most of the Islamic world. The gains that the Qur'an and the Prophet gave to women have been erroded since his death slowly but surley. We forget or ignore the fact that during his time women were judges and collectors of Hadith. There opinions on all matters of faith were sought. They fought in wars and tended the sick on the battle fields. They were allowed to earn money and to get an education. Now the only visible Muslims are women. Men look just like the non-believers. They don't wear beards but insist that women cover. They don't want women to be seen by men but don't allow them to go to medical schools to become doctors, so that when they are sick they have to go to non-believing men to be examined. Islam is a beautiful religion that allows for the growth and development of all of its followers, as long as we imprision over 2/3s of our population our growth will be stunted. Look at the terrible situation in Nigeria where a woman is to be stoned to death while the man is set free a simple DNA test would have proven the mans guilt or inocence and yet none was ordered and men cheered when the verdict of death was announced. I have long felt that the greatest damage to Islam is done not by non-believers but by Muslims themselfs. Funny thing is most of todays converts to Islam are women,because they study the faith as it was practiced by the Prophet and his immediate followers. It is only in those so called Muslim countries of the middle east that women are treated like second class citizens. I do not advocate women going uncoverd or wearing short skirts but I do want them well educated in both deen and the ways of todays world. We cannot be a strong Ummah if we only use half of our resources. I think that men are afraid and hide that fear in misrepresenting Sunnah and Hadith. It is time to untie our other hand.


If God made man/woman then His creation is above even the angels.
Why would we think we can be different then God.
Islam teaches all are equal.

You are severely generalizing in this article.

muslim are not treated as equals. my brothers wear all the latest clothes and hair styles and my parents buy him a good car and he is free to go and come as he pleases. i have to wear traditional dress and am not allowed a social life of any kind unless it's with my parents. why are they allowed to disregard the rules but i am like a prisoner?