musings on…

…hijab.

I don’t write about hijab very often.  Look, I don’t even have a hijab category.  But 2 posts recently in the blogosphere have gotten me thinking.   The first is by Organica, On Taking off the Hijab, and the second is a post on a private blog where a sister has taken off her hijab after a divorce.

First and foremost, I believe hijab is fard.  It’s required.  Wearing it is submission to Allah (swt).

But I also think that it’s overemphasized.  When newbies convert, it’s often the first thing people tell them to do, even before offering to teach them how to pray.  A person’s piety is tied into how they dress, even if it isn’t a good indicator of their inner state with Allah (swt).   I also think we talk about hijab too much, which is why I don’t post much on the subject aside from fluff.

So what can you say to someone who takes off their scarf?  Nothing?  Offer your support unconditionally?  Offer your support, but with reservation?   Tell them that they’re wrong, but in a nice way?  Condemn them?

Now switch taking off hijab with something else that’s fard.  Salat.  Fasting.  Abstaining from pork or alcohol.  Not backbiting.

I doubt we’d offer positive support to someone who announces they’re not going to pray anymore.  Or who decides that they’re going to have ham sandwiches for lunch.  So why should one offer complete unconditional support without telling that person that taking the hijab off is wrong?  Sure, they know it’s wrong, but are we doing right by not saying anything?

The Qur’an tells us over and over again to enjoin what is right.  If we see a wrong and we say nothing, are we acting according to the will of Allah (swt)?

They believe in God and the Last Day, and enjoin the doing of what is right and forbid the doing of what is wrong, and vie with one another in doing good works:  and these are among the righteous (3:114)

…And that there might grow out of you a community who invite unto all that is good, and enjoin the doing of what is right and forbid the doing of what is wrong: and it is they, they who shall attain to a happy state (3:104)

Now see, here’s why I don’t write on hijab often.  I have nothing profound to say, no great insights to offer, no conclusions reached.  This is just something that has been playing in the back of my head, and I felt I needed to write something to get it out.  I haven’t commented on the sister’s blog, because I don’t comment often, and I’m loathe to seem like one of those people for whom hijab is the be all and end all of islam.

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4 thoughts on “musings on…

  1. As Salaamu Alaikum Dear Sis:

    When you find the answer, let me know. I haven’t commented on those blogs either. I know I am in error because I am not enjoining the good. But I don’t know what to say to them. So, I guess “nothing” is the best for now. What does Allah (swt) tell us? That who He leads astray no one can help. Ya Allah. It’s frightening. I must admit that the incident on the private blog really did shock and frighten me.

    On both blogs, notice all the Muslims who “supported” the taking off of the hijab. That also is frightening.

    I ask Allah (swt) for protection from the kind of confusion and pain that would make me even think of removing hijab/Ameen.

  2. I have not replied to any of those blogs, though I have seen it a few times. I guess Allah just hasn’t given me the courage to call anyone out about that sort of thing, when I do see it though I hold back the temptation to ask them a series of questions:
    1. How did you feel the first moment you took the hijab off?
    2. How did you feel the first moment you put the hijab on?

    When I put my hijab on, I never felt safer in my life. Now sometimes when I go to my parents, I will take it off because I am around family and there has been one time that I have done that when my Brother’s friend happened to stop by for a few minutes. The boy is only 12 or 13, but I immediately closed the door to the room I was in and put my hijab back on because when I saw him come him, it was like I could feel Shaytan coming into the room, just waiting to catch me in that state.

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