Women in Islam are appreciated and highly respected, opposite to a lot of misleading and incorrect information that are widely spread among non-Muslims.
Qur’an has highlighted the fact that men and women are equal in the sight of God. According to the teachings of Islam, the only thing that distinguishes people in the sight of God is their level of God-consciousness and being pious. Moreover, the Islamic Law has guaranteed rights to women over 1400 years ago, whereas women in Western societies are now struggling to obtain their rights.
For example, Islam considers the woman a full-person, the spiritual equal of a male. Also, according to the Islamic Law, women have the right to own property, operate a business and receive equal pay for equal work. The woman in Islam has total control of her wealth, she cannot be married against her will.
Moreover, the woman in Islam has the right to inherit property and has the right to get divorced if she doesn’t get good treatment from her husband, and can no longer stand her life with him (yet she has to have a good reason). Also, Islam does not look down on women nor consider them an “evil temptress”, and thus does not blame women for the “original sin”. Women in Islam participate in all forms of worship same like men. Actually, the rights that Islam gave to women over 1400 years ago were almost unheard of in the West until the 1900’s.
Fifty years ago, women in Western societies could not buy a house or a car without the signature of the father or the husband! Islam gives great respect to women and their vital role in society. Also, it is noteworthy that the Prophet Muhammad’s mission stopped many of the vicious practices in regards to women that were present in the society of his time. For example, the Qur’an put an end to the pagan Arab practice of killing their baby daughters when they were born.
If women in the Muslim World today don’t get their rights, it is not because Islam did not grant them their rights, but because of some alien traditions prevailing in many places that have come to overshadow the teachings of Islam, either through ignorance or through the impact of colonisation.
Islam’s respect for women is crowned with the Hijab, the veil, considered by a lot of anti-Muslims a symbol of women’s oppression and servitude. God ordered Muslim women to wear the veil (to cover the whole of their body except their face and their hands) to protect them.
The Qur’an makes it clear through many verses that the veil obligatory and not an option for Muslim women (as some misleading information state).
“O Prophet! Tell your wives and daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (jalabib) close round them (when they go abroad)…“
The Qur’an also shows how essential the veil is for modesty. Modesty is prescribed to protect women from molestation. Thus, the only purpose of the veil in Islam is protection. The Islamic veil is not a sign of man’s authority over the woman, nor is it a sign of the woman’s subjection to the man, on the contrary it shows respect and care for the woman.
Published on: May 17, 2004. From Link: islamonline.com