Beloved Sisters! Hijaab is the distinctive Islamic dress whose features have been clearly defined by the beautiful Qur’aan Sharief and Sunnah. This is a beautiful and an inspiring story by a well known sister Hafidha Rayhaanah Omar, a sister of firm Aqeedah (belief), Wisdom, Strength, Knowledge and Achievement. And being proud to be a Muslim woman. Subhaan-ALLAH!
A few years ago I listened to a Khutbah in which the learned speaker addressed concerns of Muslim women. Amongst the topics discussed, He spoke of the relationship between a Muslim woman and her ALLAH. He quoted a book, (of which I am unable to presently recall), in which he mentioned that one of the most prominent distinguishing features of the Muslim woman, is her deep faith in ALLAH TA’ALA and her sincere belief in matters that are pre-ordained by ALLAH TA’ALA. Things don’t ever occur without a reason or purpose, at time unknown to us. A person has no choice in this life, but to strive towards the right path and to do good Deeds – acts of worship and other acts – by whatever means one can, putting all trust in ALLAH TA’ALA, submitting to HIS will, and believing that one is always in need of ALLAH’S help and support. Events occur that causes one to stop, ponder, reflect, recognize, realize and arise at the eventuality of the deed done or the word spoken – Glory be to ALLAH TA’ALA through whose blessings and wonders we are constantly inspired! I was due to attend an awards ceremony, in which I was to be presented with a trophy. The award was for outstanding media contribution to the environment in Southern Africa. Hesitant to attend at first, I attended the awards ceremony, my only hope, was to make it a learning experience, one which would make me wise and teach me something. Little did I know, how much learning I was in for! Time passed and the moment for award presentations had arrived. I seriously contemplated running a mile in the opposite direction, when I began counting the distance I would have to walk, to receive the award. No recognizable Muslims in sight no familiar faces – very unlike other ceremonies we often attend. The award was called out and, slowly, very slowly, I rose to the front of the podium. Heads turned. Eyes stared – unblinkingly. An abyss of silence. Pin-drop silence. Now, you must understand, given the situation I was in, this was all quiet natural. After all, it is not often that you find a Muslim woman, clad from head to toe, in layers of black cloth receiving an award – that didn’t have much to do with religion, or so people thought. It was here that people approached me, asking whether I spoke or understood english. If I knew how to read and whether I did all the things ‘normal’ people do! Yes, yes and yes… again! I laugh, I cry, I smile, I eat… my veiled face is not indicative of a veiled personality nor does it affect my personality, as long as I do that which pleases ALLAH TA’ALA, In’Shaa’ALLAH. ‘I feel often, that as a covered Muslim woman, I have so many attitudes to confront, so many false images to dispel.’ My Hijaab, no doubt, is a celebration of my Muslim womanhood and I am proud to be a Muslim woman, Al-Hamdulillah.
Safiyah bint Shaybah said, When we with Aa’ishah (Radhiallahu Anha) said, “The woman of Quraish are good, but by ALLAH, I have never seen any better or more strict in their adherence to the Book of ALLAH, than the women of Ansaar.” When Surah An-Noor (24th Chapter of the Qur’aan) was revealed – ‘that they should draw their veils over their bosoms…’ their menfolk went to them and recited to them the words ALLAH had revealed. Each man recited to his wife, daughter, his sister and other female relatives. Every woman among them got up, took her decorated wrapper, and wrapped herself up in it, out of faith and belief in ALLAH had revealed. They appeared behind the Messenger of ALLAH (Sallallaahu Alhaihi Wa Sallam), wrapped up, as if there were crows on their heads. (Ibid) And while we have all read of verses and virtues of Hijaab and encountered many sisters in Hijaab, we may never, ever relish the beauty of the Muslim woman’s identity until we adopt this Sunnah, In’Shaa’ALLAH. If the time is ‘not right’ when will it be right time? Are we guaranteed life, to see through the night? And while the outside world learnt about Muslim women and went back, all the wiser, knowing that Islaam values the environment, too – I emerged a Muslim woman, in even greater appreciation of the bounty of the Hijaab.
Al-Hamdulillah! Hafidha’s beautiful encounter teaches and remind us Hijaab is Imaan, Taqwah, Tahara and a Shield. This path is a straight one that is surrounded by virtue from all sides and attends to the best of moral characteristics, which are increased by the clothing of purity, concealment, and chastity. The determination of many modern societies that women should be uncovered and living immoral lives, is an indication of how far they deviated from the guidance of ALLAH, not only in the Muslim lands, but in all countries of the world. The Westerners may not care about this, and may go ahead and invent more means of immorality without finding any deterrent in their corrupted books. But the Muslims who worship ALLAH by reciting His perfectly preserved Book Al-Qur’aan Sharief night and day, will never accept such deviance, no matter how negligent and weak they are in their practice of Islam, because they constantly hear the definitive words of the Qur’aan Sharief and Sunnah, warning those who disobey ALLAH and HIS Messenger (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Sallam), of the test in this life, and the severe punishment to come in the Hereafter.
“… Let those beware who withstand the Messenger’s order, lest some trial befall them, or a grievous Penalty be inflicted on them.” [Qur’aan 24: 63]
Hijaab is a high form of worship that is not subject to the opinions of people and their orientations and choices because the One who legislated it is the Most Wise Creator, ALLAH TA’ALA. When ALLAH – the High and Almighty – commands us, HE knows that in HIS command lies our best interest and happiness. Consequently, when HE commands the woman to cover up her modesty, HE knows that in this command lies her happiness, glory and dignity.
Our beloved Messenger (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) so beautifully said:
“ALLAH, Most High, is Heaven, is Ha’yeii (Bashful), Sit’teer (Shielder). HE loves Haya’ (Bashfulness) and Sitr (Shielding; Covering).”
A beautiful rose protects itself by thorns and a woman protects her beauty by Hijaab, Subhaan-ALLAH!
My Beloved Sisters! All I want to befall you is good. My worry about you is what makes me pray, from the depth of my heart, that ALLAH protects you from all evil; I pray to ALLAH to fill your heart with HIS light that never fades, to aid you with enough power with which you can overcome human and Shaitaan, and break their shackles; I pray to ALLAH to free you from the captivity of whims and desires, and to open to you the world of freedom, honour, integrity, and the world of purity and chastity. In’Shaa’ALLAH, Aameen!!!
~The only lasting beauty is the beauty of the ♥~