I really feel I have to write this down, and I can only be glad that only four people have visited my blog.
So, after reading a post by another blogger I lay awake at night. What is wrong? It is hypocrisy: one of the most disturbing and angering concepts for me. I just have to write something about it. How is it possible when Islam has so many sunnahs and excellent provisions for women, ensuring their freedom of choice, work, maintenance, etc. that they are treated so contradictory? Well, just as happens in other religions, the words get twisted. Only the ones in power can twist the words. That means, in a patriarchal society: men. Men have too much power at this moment in time and space. ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS
Sorry, some men. Because I’m going to vent my spleen, I want to make it clear that I like men, and want one of my own, but there are a great many unworthy ones roaming about, and they are the ones I’m talking about in the rest of this post when I write ”men”.
I give, for the sake of the argument, a list here which is by no means definitive, you can call a hiijab covering up, or insist on a Niqab as well. For the purpose of the argument, and because I’m writing this post as a response to the post of a Saudi woman, we’ll take the complete niqab. So here are a couple of rules, as I understand it so far.
- Islam considers women to be jewels, to be cared for and protected.
- To protect everybody from the temptations of Shaytan, women are required to cover-up, in saudi that means abaya and niqab, by law, weather you want to or not.
- Men are the protectors and maintainers of women.
- No, doesn’t work; re. all the stories of harassment I’ve been reading recently, even of women who have children with them. And although you get credit for being modest, Allah doesn’t give credit for deeds that are forced, or engaged in for ulterior motives. So, all women walk around covered in layers of black cloth, in one of the hottest countries in the world. Pfff, luckily women are regarded as precious jewels, and are highly regarded for their suffering. This also makes the men treat them with respect. Oh, no, I go completely astray! Men harass women, put all sorts of restraining rules up, which make it impossible to do some shopping, get a job, or get the children to school. (as is their right according to Islam) And if they are audacious enough to actually dó their jobs as wives and mothers, they are considered and treated by some men as outlaws and nobody cares if they are worried, scared or unhappy. Every aspect here seems hypocrisy
- Excellent, but: there seem to be an awful lot of hypocrites about who go for harassing and bothering women, instead of caring for and protecting them. Would be great though, if that one was actually kept.
So it’s all much of the same thing, and completely contradictory to religion. Yet not much is being done about it. And I find it very strange. There is one extenuating circumstance for the men: the concept of ”segregation” is taken to incredible extremes, like nowhere else on the planet, and its effects are apparently equally extreme. So who’s to blame? Officially, naturally, the women! Because, just as everywhere else on the planet, women are the source of all that’s evil. Its just their fault for being women.
I’ll be very shocking now: I think it’s the men. Why is it so necessary to dress so modest? Because men are apparently unable to control themselves otherwise. Oh, no, even when dressed more modestly than seems humanly possible, they still can’t control themselves. Why is it that I hear from some women that they like wearing abaya and niqab (in western countries)? because they are finally seen as a person, and not being assessed, and goggled at anymore. (by men) So it seems that men are incapable of ”normal” behaviour, but it’s women who have to suffer for it.
And here we come to what is now an old story, but it is a poignant one, and one that’s been roaming my mind a long time. It’s ” The Girl of Qatif ” Now, this story has been on many media, and one hears different versions. As I was barely capable of leaving the couch at that time I’ve seen and read most versions, and I’m going to give my interpretation of the Truth, the Official Version (with comments) and; by the grace of Boundless Imagination: How it could have played out in a truly devout Islamic country.
The story 1
Girl, 18 years old. Is engaged. Former friend has a photograph of her, and won’t let her have it back unless in person. (now I take it that it doesn’t have to be very shocking at all, I suppose a portrait would already be something you’d want back) So, meeting in front of busy mall, in car. Seven man with knives abduct the two, rape them and dump them. Later they also start bragging about their exploits. Year later rumours spread, Girl is married or about to. Husband asks, girl tells horrible event. Husband angry, they engage really cool lawyer, and sue. Not for actual rape: to late, no proof. Judges, especially one, predisposed. Give comparatively small sentences to the bastards, and big sentence to victims. (because they were not allowed to have met, as opposite sexes. It appears that this comparatively small offence is regarded just as almost as heavy a crime as gang-rape and sodomy) As an added torture and punishment, girl is treated during trial as criminal and is faced with attackers, and has to endure their abuse too. The criminals are not stopped by the judges. Husband, girl and lawyer appeal, and speak to media. Big mistake. Sentence is doubled for girl, lawyer argued with the judge (how dare he!!!) and gets licence revoked. Big media-hype, in the west, but also (for a change, according to bloggers ) in KSA itself. At the beginning of Hajj King pardons girl, more debate, but at least girl doesn’t get to spend one year in prison, and 200 lashes. (Picture I’ve seen show no Q’urans under arms but big men wholeheartedly doing their jobs to the utmost of their power. More hypocrisy)
(This story was put out by officials, after the hue and cry, to discredit the girl) (I can hardly get myself to write this)
Girl is very depraved, and has longstanding illicit affair, and wants to retrieve indecent photographs from former illicit lover. Meets him at the mall, steps in his car. Instead of getting her pictures, they suddenly find themselves on a lonely road where they are found in a state of undress being immoral. Seven upright guys just happen to pass along, see them and can’t help themselves, but commit multiple rape. (somehow this is quite righteous) The man gets raped too. (Ehh, isn’t that sodomy? I had the impression that was very bad indeed????) So naturally the judges couldn’t have passed any other sentence as they did, everything honky-dory. No, as if it wasn’t already bad enough this abandoned woman thinks she should bring these shining lights of Islamic rectitude to the court! Luckily the enlightened judge remedies this by torturing stricken woman with the close proximity and insults and threats of the seven righteous men. But no matter, he’s punishing this lady for her crimes, and everything finished. Or is it? The pesky lawyer actually has the audacity to do his job and appeal? And speak to the press? And all these foreign unbelievers start to have ridiculous demands? Let’s quickly put out some badly manufactured lies about the girl so everybody must acknowledge that ”She got what she deserved!” All sentences are increased and the abandoned woman’s isn’t revoked, but doubled. The lawyers’ licence is revoked: Justice has been served!
And now we enter the Realms of Imagination, this is how I imagined the story would have gone if Qatif had been a city in a truly Islamic country:
Once upon a time, there was a girl who lived in a country which was truly Islamic. The people followed the example of the prophet (pbuh) and kept to the five pillars of Islam.
This girl now had met a boy at school, and they had become friends. Everybody went to school, as teaching and learning are pleasing to Allah. And as the prophet (pbuh) taught both men and women; boys and girls had to learn as much as they could. The girl had given the boy a photograph but as she was now engaged to be married she wanted it back. She was sorry that she had given him the photograph, and didn’t want him to keep it. He for some reason, (we can imagine a couple but they’re not very nice ones) told her he’d only give it back if she agreed to meet with him. She didn’t want to do that, but she wanted him to give back her photo, so she met him in a public place, in front of a mall. Perhaps the former friend had gossiped about his plans, we don’t know, but for some reason, seven very evil men, possessed by Shaytan, knew they were there and abducted them, threatening them with knives, and raped them.
The girl went home, everybody noticed at once something was very wrong, and she told about her horrible ordeal. She was taken immediately to the hospital, where she was examined and cared for. A psychiatrist, specialising in the traumatic experience of rape was assigned to help her. The police went out and arrested the criminals and put them in jail. Her fiancee was enraged at the horrible crime committed on his fiancee and hired a very good lawyer. The case was brought to trial as soon as possible. The heinous crime was reported in the media.
The whole country was incensed at this terrible crime. You see, in this country women were regarded as precious pearls, and it was every man’s religious duty, and delight, to look after women, protect them, and see that they were happy and unharmed. In this country a beautiful women could walk around on her own, with a purse of gold, without ever being robbed or harassed. Now the whole population rose very early the next morning to make d’ua for the girls recovery, before morning prayer. With so many people and the angels in heaven saying d’ua for her, she started to feel a bit better. Before and during the trial she was treated with the utmost regard so as not to make her suffer more. Her testimony was taken in a private room and taped for the trial, so that she would not have to stand in the courtroom with the criminals. The judges were incensed! Luckily the Sharia was very clear: multiple rape on one of their precious and esteemed women, and sodomy on a young man. All rapist were sentenced to death. The judge omitted to give the two young people a reprimand for their careless behaviour: in light of the terrible things they had been through that would have been ridiculous.
Notice that two men, the husband, and the lawyer, are mega-cool hero’s from whichever viewpoint you tell the story.
Pity there are only two of them.
”The believers, men and women, are protectors of one another; they enjoy what is right and forbid what is wrong.”
The prophet (pbuh) said:”The best of you is the one who is best towards his wife, and I am the best of you towards my wifes”