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"بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم"
In the name of Allah (God), Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Questions & Answers about Hijaab
What is the Hijab?
The word itself comes from the arabic word "hajaba" meaning to conceal or hide from view. Hijab is the modest covering of the head and body of muslim women.
Who has to wear it?
All muslim adults are supposed to wear the appropriate hijab for their sex.This is one Hadith related by Abu Dawood: "Ayesha(r) reported that Asmaa bint Abu Bakr(r) came to the Messenger of Allah(swt) while wearing thin clothing. He approached her and said: 'O Asmaa! When a girl reaches the menstrual age, it is not proper that anything should remain exposed except this and this.' He pointed to the face and hands."
Muslims must wear the hijab because Allah(swt) ordered it. Muslims have two sources for guidance. The first and most important source is Qur'an, the revealed word of Allah(swt). They may then use Hadith which is the sayings and traditions of the Prophet Muhammad(saw) who was chosen by Allah(swt) to be a role model for mankind.
Here are two passages from the Qur'an that order the hijab.
Surat Al-'Aĥzāb (The Combined Forces) - سورة الأحزاب
يَا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ قُل لِّأَزْوَاجِكَ وَبَنَاتِكَ وَنِسَاءِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ يُدْنِينَ عَلَيْهِنَّ مِن جَلَابِيبِهِنَّ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ أَدْنَىٰ أَن يُعْرَفْنَ فَلَا يُؤْذَيْنَ ۗ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا
O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies (i.e.screen themselves completely except the eyes or one eye to see the way). That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever OftForgiving, Most Merciful.
Surat An-Nūr (The Light) - سورة النور
Verses 30 to 31
قُل لِّلْمُؤْمِنِينَ يَغُضُّوا مِنْ أَبْصَارِهِمْ وَيَحْفَظُوا فُرُوجَهُمْ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ أَزْكَىٰ لَهُمْ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا يَصْنَعُونَ
Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.). That is purer for them. Verily, Allah is All-Aware of what they do.
وَقُل لِّلْمُؤْمِنَاتِ يَغْضُضْنَ مِنْ أَبْصَارِهِنَّ وَيَحْفَظْنَ فُرُوجَهُنَّ وَلَا يُبْدِينَ زِينَتَهُنَّ إِلَّا مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا ۖ وَلْيَضْرِبْنَ بِخُمُرِهِنَّ عَلَىٰ جُيُوبِهِنَّ ۖ وَلَا يُبْدِينَ زِينَتَهُنَّ إِلَّا لِبُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ آبَائِهِنَّ أَوْ آبَاءِ بُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ أَبْنَائِهِنَّ أَوْ أَبْنَاءِ بُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ إِخْوَانِهِنَّ أَوْ بَنِي إِخْوَانِهِنَّ أَوْ بَنِي أَخَوَاتِهِنَّ أَوْ نِسَائِهِنَّ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُنَّ أَوِ التَّابِعِينَ غَيْرِ أُولِي الْإِرْبَةِ مِنَ الرِّجَالِ أَوِ الطِّفْلِ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يَظْهَرُوا عَلَىٰ عَوْرَاتِ النِّسَاءِ ۖ وَلَا يَضْرِبْنَ بِأَرْجُلِهِنَّ لِيُعْلَمَ مَا يُخْفِينَ مِن زِينَتِهِنَّ ۚ وَتُوبُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ جَمِيعًا أَيُّهَ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ
And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.) and not to show off their adornment except only that which is apparent (like palms of hands or one eye or both eyes for necessity to see the way, or outer dress like veil, gloves, head-cover, apron, etc.), and to draw their veils all over Juyubihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and bosoms, etc.) and not to reveal their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers or their brother's sons, or their sister's sons, or their (Muslim) women (i.e. their sisters in Islam), or the (female) slaves whom their right hands possess, or old male servants who lack vigour, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful.
By covering our beauty, we are evaluated for our intelligence and skills instead of looks and sexuality. Many women who cover are filled with dignity and self-esteem and are happy to be identified as a muslim woman. By wearing hijab the woman is concealing her sexuality but allowing her femininity to shine. Aside from that, it is pleasing to Allah and in return we earn blessings from wearing it.
Islam has no fixed standard as to the style of dress or type of clothing that muslims must wear. There are however, some requirements that must be met. These include:
Body must be covered
'The Prophet(saw) cursed the men who appeared like women and the women who appeared like men.'"
Clothing is only one facet of hijab. It is also behavior, manner, and speech. Women who wear the hijab do not find it inhibiting, impractical, or interfering. We should wear the hijab to show our identity as muslims. More importantly, we should wear it to show our love and respect for Almighty Allah and his instructions.
An Iranian school girl is quoted as saying
"We want to stop men from treating us like sex objects, as they have always done. We want them to ignore our appearance and to be attentive to our personalities. We want them to take us seriously and treat us as equals and not chase us around for our bodies and physical looks."
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