Monday, December 1, 2008
I don't remember much about Växjö.
I don't remember who i thought i was,until one day when i came to school with a beautiful blue velvet scarf that i begged mom to let me have it for days.I was so excited,couldn't sleep the night before.I kept imagining how everybody would praise it and try it on.I looked in the mirror.So beautiful.
But what happened drew a line between who i was the day before and who I became that day.
I was yelled at by the teachers,embarrassed in front of the whole class and kicked out of the classroom.I was so confused,i became mentally numb.I didn't know what to do.I was just six for crying out loud!
I remember running away,to the fence of the school,contemplating jumping over it and run home to the safe arms of mother.But something stopped me.Maybe i was waiting for them to come and tell me it was all a joke.Of course we love it.I waited and waited.At that time i had the blessing of not being aware of time.I thought it was an eternity before the teachers came and walked me back to the class.Without the scarf.I had taken it off.
That was my first defeat and surrender i can recall.I didn't know why mum was wearing it.But i wanted to be just like her.
That day i realised i wasn't like anybody else.I wasn't the typical Swede I used to play outside with.Go to birthday parties with.Eat potatoes and meatballs.No i wasn't.But who was I?
It took 13 years for me to answer it.
I'm a Muslimah
Just stare at th phone
I need to make this call
I pick it up and i almost put it down when i hear th tone
But She inside calms me
So i keep it to my ear,a bit far from it
C'mon it's not going to bite you
I wish i could be as composed as her
i slap myself
Act a woman for crying out loud i say more for She to hear it and think i'm strong
It goes through
I almost faint because i don't know what to say
I breath out when i realize it's prerecorded
Thank you for calling Heaven.Please note that duas to this tollfree location are free when calling from Dunya.All duas are recorded for safety and quality purposes.They will be publicly broadcast on Yawmul Akhira.
Please choose one of the following options.
If you are a devout muslim press 1,If you are a byname muslim and want to start practice press 2,if you are wicked and intending to stay that way press 3
My mind freezes.Which one was i again?
You haven't pressed anything.If you are a devout mus-
One.Right.I was one.
For Eman topup press 1.For pin and puk codes of your Eman press 2.To check your current Eman status press 3.To check if Osama is alive press 4
I was tempted to check if Osama was alive,especially since Fartun told me he's not
She,you know th witch up in my head,told me i wouldn't dare.You know why you called,now get through with it Mulki!
You haven't pressed anything.
If you want to talk to Allaah,press hash now
I press,thinking its some kinda joke
Please note that He wont answer you in words but in action.Use your words with consideration
My mind spins and im so scared
I am so not ready for this
I hear a distant 'please speak after th tone'
Fatigued i sit down on th floor
It's me mulki
Ehm I don't know where to start
But You already know where i'm taking this
I've been incredibly stupid
i locked You out of my heart
And thought running back to get my old skin back was th best thing to do
Th niqabs too extreme
Th gloves too frightening
Th jilbab too long
i turned around and saw it was shaitan
but i wasnt surprised
he said what everybody else was thinking
or maybe he was th one that put that into peoples minds
i swear Allaah i did it for You and i loved it
I need tell You that
When th shaitan handed me my old skin i looked down and saw that his comments about me was right
surely Allaah doesn't want me to suffer like this
I was a fool,and a joke
he offered a chinese screen with beautiful patterns to change my skin
i took it all off
down to th Eman
i meant to put it back when i changed
thats when he ate it
You should have seen-
I mean You saw, You knew
Devoured it like a wolf
i then could see how unhealthy it looked
Whats worse is that he keeps talking to me
at first i always was tormented by it
but then it became normal
apart of me
he forgot to eat one thing
i keep having nightmares of Jahanam
i don't pray that much
i didn't fast shawal
but You know that
You don't no one but i am going to die mentally,devour myself if You don't help me
I'm sorry if it sounds like a command
but i turn to You
and want an EMAN...
and indeed as soon as i put down that phone,i felt something in my chest.There it was,my Eman.Will die for it,because without it i'm dead
Th Noble Prophet said:
"A man was walking through th desert with his camel which was loaded with goods.Th camel happened to run away and th man in his utter sorrow laid down to die.He was later awoken by th camel standing next to him,nothing missing of th goods.He jumped up with joy and ecstacy and said:O Allaah,You are my servant and i am Your lord.He didn't know what he was saying out of sheer joy.Allaah beco
mes that happy when one of you turn back to Him"
The word "mustahabb" means "seeking the love (of Allah SWT)". A hadith qudsi beautifully describes the way to seek the love of Allah SWT:
Abu Huraira reported that the Prophet said, "Allah said: My servant draws not near to Me with anything more loved by Me than the religious duties I have enjoined upon him, and My servant continues to draw near to Me with supererogatory works so that I shall love him"
found in Sahih Bukhari
Our service of Allah SWT through our obedience of whatever He has commanded us draws us near to Him, and by doing more than has been commanded of us, we may draw nearer to Him still, inshallah.
Clearly, hijab is a command from Allah SWT and sisters draw near to Him through wearing hijab. And clearly, doing more than has been commanded is a way to draw still nearer to Allah SWT.
When a sister is already covering everything but her face and her hands, and she would like to do something extra to seek the love of Allah SWT, the only things left for her to cover are - her face and her hands!
Even if there were no other reason to wear niqab, surely this would be enough! How can it be "extreme" to wear niqab or gloves when her face and her hands are the only things the Muslim sister has uncovered in public to begin with??
Niqab as haya
The word "haya" is often translated into English as "shyness", but this does not really give a very good idea of its meaning in Arabic. A better, if longer, translation of its meaning might be "keeping private what should be private".
Islam places a very great importance on privacy, and on keeping private what should be private. Hijab is in fact part of a larger code of conduct, and constitutes only one aspect of haya.
Allah SWT has through the Shari’a clearly distinguished between public and private space and placed a screen (i.e., hijab) between them. Private space is physically divided from public space and strongly protected against any incursion (Surah an-Nur ayat 27-29). What people do in private space has also been protected and screened. This is accomplished by the bans on speculation, gossip and spying (Surah an-Nur ayat 12-13 and Surah al-Hujurat ayat 11-12). What is private must be kept private, by the physical protection of walls and by the conduct of Muslims in not talking about it, speculating over it, or looking into it. The same rule applies to the physical person, as what is not necessary to be displayed for some task should be covered (or, as the Quran says in Surah an-Nur ayah 31, women are "not to display their beauty except what is apparent of it"). Furthermore, in the private space of the home and family, rules are relaxed. People within the special group of family may visit freely (Surah an-Nur ayah 61) and be at ease in dress (Surah an-Nur ayah 31). By contrast, in public space, rules are strict. This includes not only dress but also conduct: physical contact should be avoided, talk should be business-like, and khulwa (i.e., an unrelated man and woman being alone together) should be avoided. In the dress, speech, and behaviour of the Muslim, there should be a screen which separates the public (that which is necessary to be made known) and the private (that which is not necessary to be made known).
From this, we can see that hijab is a screen of privacy, an act of haya. Clearly, it is mustahabb to screen our privacy even more than has been commanded. We can respect other peoples' privacy more carefully through avoiding speculation, gossip, and spying; and we can protect our own privacy more carefully through taking extra steps in modest dress, in avoiding physical contact and khulwa with non-mahrams, and in keeping conversation with non-mahrams to the minimum necessary to conduct our business. For sisters, as stated above, that extra degree in modest dress must and can only be niqab and gloves.
Niqab as taqwa
We can also look at another aspect. Sometimes people criticize Islam or Muslims for being too concerned with outward things and not concerned enough with inner things. It is true that this can lead to hypocrisy. Yet we should not be discouraged by hypocrites or let them push us to the opposite extreme of saying that outward things are not important at all.
Sometimes the outward things help us develop the inner, by making us more aware of Allah SWT. This awareness that Allah SWT is watching us is called in Arabic "taqwa".
Hijab can increase taqwa. When a sister sees her own reflection and her hijab, or when she becomes aware of it as she wears it, she may be reminded that she dresses like this because Allah SWT has ordered it, and because she knows that He is aware of what she does. These thoughts may inspire her to behave in the best possible manner.
So just think how much more of a reminder niqab is!
As well, for many sisters, hijab is a spiritual jihad because it often seems so difficult to wear. At times we may be forced to look deep into ourselves and find our faith and our courage. This provides many spiritual benefits in itself, and an increase of taqwa.
Again, just think how much more of a challenge niqab is, and how much greater the benefits when the nafs (inner self) has been conquered!
These are just some of the ways that niqab is mustahabb, some of the qualities and benefits of hijab that niqab is an extra degree of. Even if there were no record in the Shari'a of niqab, yet all of these reasons would still be true, and it would still be mustahabb to wear niqab.
Above are a number of different perspectives on why niqab is mustahabb. Niqab is just an extra degree of hijab and thus whatever benefits hijab brings as a commandment of Allah SWT, niqab brings an extra degree of by being a supererogatory (nafl) act.
But niqab is also SUNNA. That is, extra modesty in general is mustahabb, and niqab is the specific form of extra modesty indicated by the Shari'a.
How has niqab been indicated by the Shari'a?
1) For Ummahat al-Muminin (rAa), the wives of the Prophet (sAas), niqab is fard. It has been commanded in Surah al-Ahzab ayah 53 and the hadiths confirm that Ummahat al-Muminin (rAa) covered their faces in obedience to the command in this ayah to screen themselves from non-mahram men. (My note: If you claim that niqab "presents a bad image of Islam" or "is oppressive" - think! Would you say that if you saw Ummahat al-Muminin (rAa) wearing their niqabs? There is no dispute that Ummahat al-Muminin (rAa) wore niqab, and this fact alone makes it clear that niqab is part of Islam.) Ummahat al-Muminin (rAa) are also a model to all Muslim women and this is another reason in itself that niqab is mustahabb.
2) It appears that during a time in Madinah when the Muslims were being persecuted (as mentioned in Surah al-Ahzab ayat 57-61), it was fard for all Muslim women to draw their jilbabs over their faces. Subsequently, this understanding of Surah al-Ahzab ayah 59 was superceded by Surah an-Nur ayah 31, which allows the display of the face and hands. Please see What is the Final Rule on Hijab? for more about this point. As mentioned in Evidences for Jilbab, the purpose of the jilbab is to protect the Muslim woman and to assert her Islamic identity; clearly then, niqab is an extra form of protection and an extra step to take in asserting Islamic identity.
3) Even after Surah an-Nur ayah 31 had been revealed, ordinary Muslim women continued to wear niqab with the approval of the Prophet (sAas). This has specifically been mentioned for Umm Khallad (Sunan Abu Dawud Book 14 #2482), Asma bint Abu Bakr (Muwatta Book 20 #20.5.16), and some Qurayshi women who were visiting the Prophet (sAas) (Sahih Bukhari Book 54 #515). As well, the fact that the Prophet (sAas) had to tell women not to wear niqab and gloves in ihram (Sahih Bukhari Book 29 #64) means that niqab and gloves were well-known and worn by a substantial number of sahabiyat (rAa). Clearly this form of extra modesty has the approval of the Prophet (sAas) and that is another reason that it is sunna.
The descriptions of the dress of Ummahat al-Muminin (rAa), of the way that the jilbab was worn when Surah al-Ahzab ayah 59 was first revealed, and of the extra-modest dress worn by some of the sahabiyat (rAa) all clearly and unambiguously point to a face-cover. This makes niqab the specific form of extra-modest dress set by the Shari'a. As such, it is sunna as well as mustahabb.
|Hijab is a screen of privacy||Niqab is a better screen|
|Hijab helps develop taqwa||Niqab helps develop more taqwa|
|Hijab is a jihad that purifies the soul||Niqab is a greater jihad|
|Hijab is a protection for sisters||Niqab is a better protection|
|Hijab is an assertion of Islamic identity||Niqab is a stronger assertion|
|Hijab is fard||Niqab is mustahabb|