It’s two in the morning and I am wide awake, questions asked by a friend through our regular long hours call are suddenly bouncing in my head. The truth is, it is not sudden that her curiousity had turned into my curiousity. A curiousity as to how, I, as a Muslimah, and more than anyone else, as her friend, could possibly answer her questions. Questions that both She and I know are not aiming to suspect but rather a pure act of affirmation she needs, affirmation that Allah SWT’s words about the modesty for Muslimah. It is for no one but us, not even for Allah SWT, it is for our very own benefits.
And this is how this post was created.
To try my best to answer her questions, which also might be on other Muslimah’s minds but never dared to ask. Or can’t even be bothered.
This post is to acknowledge a friend who is in the middle of a pavement, racing with trains of curiousity about Islam.
To answer tons of unanswered questions she asked, The very first thing I do was to reflect.
Why did you decide to wear Hijab,Vin?
I think that was the root to answer all of her questions.
Like any other things, there must be a very strong and solid foundation in everything that you do. An inspiration may make you start, but to be consistent or Istiqomaah. You’ve got to reaffirm and ensure that your motive was right from the beginning.
A change in the lifestyle for instance. You’ve made up your mind to be healthier and fitter and more active. But after a few days, exercise has became a burden while a trip to the Fast Food Restaurant has became your first favorite. The reason is not that you’ve got Amnesia that those food additives are now turned into vitamins. It is that, there was an absence in yourself believing that if you eat those things you are destructing your body. But most people are more concerned about looking good. Rather than focusing on the primary thing. Doing good for your body, the only place you could live in. I am not saying that it is wrong to be concerned about your looks, but it shouldnt be your basis, let alone priority.
Then what about the soul?
It is not wrong to wear hijab because your school regulation, it is not wrong to do it because your parents asked you to, it is not wrong to follow other Muslimahs. You are still wearing it. But, you might missed the very important essence of it, if you didn’t bother to look for it.
You’d also need some kinds of confirmation that this is the right thing to do for your own good. Because if there is a slight hesitation on its ‘essentiality’ as time goes by and the tests are becoming more challenging, you may surrender. Not because you weren’t genuine, but because your genuinity was not based on a strong foundation. But a windy one.
Although Alhamdulillah, with Allah’s will, The path to this journey was opened smoothly and very straightforwad for me I might say, the so called Calling for Guidance or Hidayaah came in like a Swift, which InshaAllah will be posted seperately on : Hijab, Longing for a call? Part 2 : My Story
Althought it might sound weird. I am kind of thankful that my parents never “force” me to wear Hijaab, because if they did. I might take my Hijaab off when they are not around, like when I am studying abroad for instance. Because if they did, Hijaab might become a burden that my parents told me to do. And if I was asked why I wear Hijaab, the answer will be because of my parents. But because they never did that, and it was my very own decision, my answer is different. Instead of my parents, I understand that wherever I’ll be, Allah SWT is watching.
This post is dedicated to my friend, A, Muslimah who is in the middle of a bridge not knowing to continue on or walk backwards, and especially for my very own self, as a reminder and a platform of self learning.
I sincerely hope that these paragraphs that are full of flaws might be benefical for someone. Someone out there living in a different country from me. Or someone very close.
Holy Quran 24:31
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 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 their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their sons, their husbands’ sons, their brothers, their brothers’ sons, their sisters’ sons, their women, that which their right hands possess, or those male attendants having no physical desire, or children who are not yet aware of the private aspects of women. And let them not stamp their feet to make known what they conceal of their adornment. And turn to Allah in repentance, all of you, O believers, that you might succeed.
The next question she asked is Why was hijab regulated in such a way that only the face and palm of a woman’s hand can be seen by non mahrams?
Initially, I had no idea. But this is what I said. I think it is somekind of uniform that Allah SWT has provided us with. Just like the school that has different uniforms to wear everyday, I think Allah made it in such a way so that we dont end up debating and get confused. It is like a “standard” to follow. So we would know that when other than the two are showing, it is not okay.
Imagine if Allah SWT never made such standards, I think I will get really confused. Because people’s perceptions are varied. Some might say short skirt is anything slightly below our knees and up. Some might argue that 10 cm above the knees is only considered short. Human’s perception is like that in nature. Allah SWT knows it all too well, that’s why the ayah to wear Hijaab was given. This is wholly my perception, I don’t know. Wallahu A’lam Bishawab
But what I truly know by heart is that, Unlike what some medias interpreted, Hijaab is never once meant as an oppression, it’s always meant as a protection. Rather than a forcefull act I see it as a freedom of action, like any other women I am also given the right to choose what I want to wear and what I, my own self, am comfortable to show or not to show to others.
Happy International Women’s Day!