Misconceptions about Muslim Women 5/6/13

Criticisms of Hijab


If you asked a non Muslim what is their first perception when you say

Muslim man

Muslim women

What do you think their answers would be?

It is likely there would be negative connotations. Maybe their answers would be terrorist and oppressed. Why?? Because of the misconceptions propagated by the media.

They don’t know us.

When people train dogs, if every time they put food down they ring a bell, soon the dog will associate food with the bell. When you ring the bell, they will prepare for food even if the food cannot be seen. This is what the media has done; everytime they mention Muslim, they show a negative story. So now when the word Muslim is mentioned, people expect something negative to occur, even when it hasn’t.

Let’s look at some of the misconceptions surrounding Islam


hijab is cultural and not from Islam

And tell the believing women to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts and not expose their adornment except that which [necessarily] appears thereof and to wrap [a portion of] their headcovers over their chests and not expose their adornment except to …..24.31


Ya ayyuha annabiyyuqul li-azwajika wabanatika wanisa-ialmu/mineena yudneena AAalayhinna min jalabeebihinna thalikaadna an yuAArafna fala yu/thayna wakanaAllahu ghafooran raheema

O Prophet, tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to bring down over themselves [part] of their outer garments. That is more suitable that they will be known and not be abused. And ever is Allah Forgiving and Merciful.


The word used as outer garment is jalabib (plural of jilbab), this was used to refer to a garment which covers the body completely. We all know what a jilbaab is. The Quran clearly states that the beleiving women should wear jilbaab. So how can it be argued that it is not written in the Quran to cover? This comes from people interpreting the Quran from English translations, and prefering their own conclusions to those of trusted scholars, and also ignoring cultural terminology.

If I go to a non muslim’s house and ask for a scarf, I will recieve something different then if I go to a Muslims house to ask for a scarf. This shows how English terminology can be interpreted differently according to cultural context, and is demonstrative of how misunderstandings in the words “cloak” “outergarment” and “veil” as used in the Quran can occur.

 Hijab makes women invisible

–  no effect on women’s social interaction.

– The rights of each Muslim woman to get proper education and enjoy equal right with other women and men is not denied although they are required to wear veil and cover themselves according to Islamic requirement.

– A muslim woman started one of university wearing veil, Fatima Al-Fihri- Founder of the Oldest University in the World, University of Al-Karaouine tunisia

– Muslim women went to battle defending the prophet SAW in hijab

– Saffiyah bint Abdul Muttalib, rode out to battle wearing hijab to admonish men


 Hijab disrespectful to women

Hijab means we are “To Be Judged for Our Worth, Not Our Appearance”

Women are no longer valued for something material, such as her good looks or the shape of her body. She compels others to judge her for her intelligence, kindness, honesty and personality. Therefore, people judge her for who she actually is.

The Islamic tradition of hijab frees women from being perceived primarily as sexual objects.

Women are taught from early childhood that their worth is proportional to their attractiveness, this can be seen through women’s mags, fashion industry and make up.

The hijab liberates a Muslim woman from this  oppression. She need not concern herself with her hair or makeup before she goes out.

It is simply a woman’s assertion that judgment of her physical person is to play no role whatsoever in social interaction.demand self-respect from the public, as we do not allow ourselves to be judged based on our beauty (or the lack thereof).

Since a Muslim woman is invisible behind her veil, she can be appreciated only for her intellectual qualities. Thus the importance of her physical appearance becomes subordinate to her intelligence and personality.


Men force women

The fashion industry is run by men!

Women dress up in a way that pleasing to men!

Who is in control of women?

Men should be able to control themselves.

Men are also ordered to lower gaze.

Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and protect their private parts. This is more purer for them. Indeed Allah is Well-Aware of what they do.” (Surah Nur: 30)


And those who guard their private parts save from their wives and those whom their right-hands own – so there is no blame upon them. Then whoever seeks beyond that (which is lawful), they are the transgressors.” (Surah Al Mu’minoon : Verse 5 & 6)

These commandments are backed up with punishments that deter sexual assaults on women.

Allah enjoined hijab on the Muslim women to protect them from harm.

Today, More than ever before, sex crimes are rampant and “liberated women” in the so-called civilized and modern societies face increasingly higher chances of being raped and sexually molested.

According to a survey conducted by the Federal Government, it was found that in America, a rape is committed every six minutes.

God knows His creation and knows that when women make a dazzling display of themselves with immodest clothes, perfumed bodies and made-up faces, it serves to increase the sexual deviance of the overall society.

Societies that view women as sexual objects have a horrendous rate of violence toward women. In the United States, one out of every four women will be sexually assaulted at some time in her life.

Women in our society live with the awareness that they must always be cautious of dark alleys and fearful of strangers.

This is true oppression, a type that stems directly from the perception of women as sexual objects.

Islam concerned with whole society not individuals freedom. Therefore benefit to society of women covering more important then individuals rights to show beauty. The ideals of freedom and individualism in our societies go against this which has led to the states we are in now.

Discriminatory as men dont have to wear

We separate men and women in different public bathrooms,

Public nudity laws and social norms diff for men and women,

There are different private parts for men and women in the west, in Islam private parts are still different just are more for both.

Who has the power to determine what decent and modest clothing is? Muslims assign this right to God alone as we said last week.

This is the essence of “Islam.” “Islam” means “The submission to the will of God.” What God commands, a Muslim does. They do not demand that God justify his commands before they accept them. Once they have verified that a command is indeed from God then they abide by it without hesitation.

We can indeed find this lesson in the story of Adam. In the Islamic version of the story of Adam (slightly different than that of Judaism/Christianity), Adam and Eve were created by God, educated, clothed, and then allowed to inhabit heaven. They were told by God that they could have anything their hearts desired except they must not eat from the tree. Out of envy, the devil encouraged them to eat from the tree and told them that its fruit would make them angles or immortal. They ate from the tree and immediately, their bodies were revealed to one another, so they took to scooping up the leaves off the trees in order to cover themselves. This is when Allah sent them down to earth.  What mankind learned from this lesson is that just because a person does not know the wisdom behind a command of God, and others tell him to disobey it, then if they do not abide by it, by the time the reason for the command is made apparent to them it may be too late.


Our ancestors, our predecessors are the mothers of the believers. SubhanAllah

Rights the women are given in Islam to protect them, they include rights to property, life, daughters no longer buried, maintenance, inheritance, education, freedom in marriage!


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