In recent times I’ve noticed from my Muslim and Hindu friends an undesired (albeit truly funny) habit, that being that they recoil at the prospect of discussing their faith with anybody of the opposite gender. Similarly, public encounters between believing Christians and Muslims involve (on the Christian side) such awesome academics as Dr. James White, Jay Smith, David Wood and many more. My Muslim friends don’t appear to be perturbed by being depants (metaphorically speaking) by some seasoned Christian or even an atheist opponent, granted that they’re male, yet introduce to them an Ayaan Hirsi Ali and the blood simply drains from their face. With the above in mind, I’ve shared my concerns over the Islamic doctrine’s depiction of women to whom should be most acutely aware of crimes against women, namely, female Muslims themselves. Enter “Sister Nadia,” another young Muslima wrestling the seemingly innumerable undesirable elements of Islam into something her twenty first century tastes can find a tad more palatable. I’m sharing my comment to her over here due to my original message being deleted without first being allowed a public viewing, in addition to adding reference points after each claim (which wasn’t included in the original). Let’s enjoy sister Nadia’s styling before anything else, however.
Feminism versus Islam
Feminism tells women they can walk around topless in public. Islam tells women they are queens, and encourages said queens to dress and act respectively. No self-respecting queen would dare walk around naked in public.
There is no need for “feminism” in the religion of Islam. Islam already empowers women. Yet, feminism and Islam do share some remarkable similarities.
Although Islam and feminism are not completely without common ground, the values and principles of Islam and feminism are generally contrary. Both condemn the oppression of women. Both insist that women may own their own property and dispose of it as they wish.
Still, feminists blame men for everything and believe patriarchy is the root of all problems. The feminist view that patriarchy is equivalent to the oppression of women is not compatible with Islam. The feminist idea that traditional gender roles are to be eliminated is opposed by the Islamic idea that the primary role of woman (after being a devout follower of Allah) is that of wife and mother.
Feminists do not understand how much respect is given to mothers in Islam. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) once said, “Paradise lies underneath the feet of your mother.” There are countless sayings from both the Prophet Muhammad and the Holy Qur’an which illustrate the same message.
Just as feminists do not care for traditional gender roles, they promote prostitution and other forms of “sex work” deemed illegal by most courts (OSC: And wouldn’t it just be terrible to promote prostitution, thankfully Islam does nothing of the sort. . .). Feminist argued that this form of exploitation of women’s (and even men’s) bodies is a legitimate job, that actually empowers women.
“Sex work can be very profitable for women, and many women may enjoy work that allows them to creatively express their sexuality. Sex work can allow human beings a way to safely explore their sexual desires in ways they cannot through the current social norm of heterosexual, monogamous relationships.”
Islam does not discourage women to pursue a career. The Prophet Muhammad’s first wife, Khadijah, was a business woman. Muslim women are not restricted to staying at home, nor are they only allowed to visit the masjid or market. If this happens, it is likely due to cultural practices that are un-Islamic and have nothing to do with religion.
Despite concern for the lives and rights of “all” women, feminists rarely consult actual Muslim women about what they want or need — or if they even want their “help” to begin with. For this reason alone, Muslim women should never need feminism, because feminism doesn’t want them. But that’s okay, because Muslim women are speaking up and out more than ever with the current treatment of Muslims across the globe.
Whatever you believe in, ask yourself, “What would Allah want me to do?”
With which I decided to write Nadia a collection of thoughts on Islam: Nadia, I’m curious as to how you understand the command in the Quran for husbands to beat wives they fear might be rebellious (1). Or the portion of the Quran which explains how a woman’s testimony is worth half that of a man’s (2) How about the tradition in which Mohammed allowed their followers to preform coitus interruptu upon captured women, were their rapists treating these women as queens while they were being raped in front of their husbands? (3, 4) In addition, how do you understand the role of women in Islam in light of Muslim men being allowed anywhere up to four wives, that’s gotta be an awfully big throne for four women (queens?) to sit upon, perhaps five people if their husband wanted in on the action. (5)
There’s also the tradition which says Muslim women must breast feed male visitors who are popping over for a spot of tea (milk of course included) (6). The paradise of the Quran would also be an interesting subject, wouldn’t you agree? As paradise, with its many black eyed maidens, each virgin and with swelling breasts, might be slightly emblematic of just how the Islamic traditions in the altogether view women. (7) And how about the traditions which explain women as being both mentally and spiritually deficient. (8) Mohammed’s treatment of his wife Sauda wasn’t by most women’s reckoning ideal either, considering they were in danger of divorce simply for gaining weight and becoming elderly. (9) What about the tradition in which another Muslim women is beaten until their skin is as green as her clothes, and Mohammed rules in her husbands favour. (10) Furthermore, the majority of the people in hell, according to Mohammed, are women. (11) What about when women in Islam refuse to have sexual relations with their husbands, apparently they’re cursed by the angels. (12) Or during prayer, an Islamic prayer is abrogated when either women or certain animals walk in front during. (13) Temporary marriage, also known as prostitution, was an active part of Mohammed’s mission. (14) The traditions even go so far as to claim any nation led by a female would be doomed to failure. (15) Muslim women can’t marry non-Muslim men, whereas Muslim men are allowed marital rights with regards to anyone. (16)
I hope the above message finds you well.
The insecurity haunting Muslim writers on Islam is found in that they’re more often than not fixating upon Christian religious writings and/or the history behind Christian Europe, for which it’s twice as easy for people like myself to highlight their failings and blind spots (there are many). Although, insofar as the above was concerned, I’d simply shared the wider literary context to the Islamic corpus, not the Judaeo-Christian sort, upon which Nadia promptly deleted the content, as opposed to simply getting their theology straight. My intentions in writing weren’t to propound the superiority of the Christian tradition (others make the case on my behalf), rather I’d only asked that the religious person take in and interpret an individual saying in light of the traditions as a whole.
In doing that, the person writing will find before too long that the same man who (according to Nadia) said “Paradise lies between the feet of your mother” also said “Paradise lies beneath the shade of the sword.” Therefore we can only assume the woman Mohammed was referring to in this tradition, as it was to do with a single woman, often went about sword in hand. Lies, Nadia, lies have consequences. When you belch lies around the internet vulnerable young girls believe those same lies, with which they’re then duped into buying your bogus product, one which doesn’t contain what you’ve described as being in the tin. Though I’m not asking anybody to take my word for the ugliness of the Islamic faith when put into action, rather I’m more than happy to share how gruesome Islam is by way of Muslim writers.
1. The command in the Quran for husbands to beat wives they fear might be rebellious.
Qur’an 4:34 (Shakir)—Men are the maintainers of women because Allah has made some of them to excel others and because they spend out of their property; the good women are therefore obedient, guarding the unseen as Allah has guarded; and (as to) those on whose part you fear desertion, admonish them, and leave them alone in the sleeping-places and beat them; then if they obey you, do not seek a way against them; surely Allah is High, Great.
2. Woman’s testimony is worth half that of a man’s.
Quran (2:282): “And call to witness, from among your men, two witnesses. And if two men be not found then a man and two women.”
Sahih Bukhari (6:301): “[Muhammad] said, ‘Is not the evidence of two women equal to the witness of one man?’ They replied in the affirmative. He said, ‘This is the deficiency in her intelligence.'”
3. Mohammed allowed their followers to preform coitus interruptu upon captured women.
Narrated Ibn Muhairiz: I entered the Mosque and saw Abu Said Al-Khudri and sat beside him and asked him about Al-Azl (i.e. coitus interruptus). Abu Said said, “We went out with Allah’s Apostle for the Ghazwa of Banu Al-Mustaliq and we received captives from among the Arab captives and we desired women and celibacy became hard on us and we loved to do coitus interruptus. So when we intended to do coitus interruptus, we said, ‘How can we do coitus interruptus before asking Allah’s Apostle who is present among us?” We asked (him) about it and he said, “It is better for you not to do so, for if any soul (till the Day of Resurrection) is predestined to exist, it will exist.”
Sahih Bukhari 5:59:459
Narrated Jabir: We used to practice coitus interruptus during the lifetime of Allah’s Apostle .
Sahih Bukhari 7:62:135
4. [Wives] being raped in front of their husbands.
Muslim Number 3433: Abu Sa’id al-Khudri (Allah be pleased with him) reported that Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) sent a small army. The rest of the hadith is the same except this that he said: Except what your right hands possessout of them are lawful for you; and he did not mention” when their ‘idda period comes to an end”. This hadith has been reported on the authority of AbuSa’id (al-Khudri) (Allah be pleased with him) through another chain of transmitters and the words are: They took captives (women) on the day of Autas who had their husbands. They were afraid (to have sexual intercourse with them) when this verse was revealed:” And women already married except those whom you right hands possess.” (iv. 24)
5. Muslim men being allowed anywhere up to four wives.
O people! be careful of (your duty to) your Lord, Who created you from a single being and created its mate of the same (kind) and spread from these two, many men and women; and be careful of (your duty to) Allah, by Whom you demand one of another (your rights), and (to) the ties of relationship; surely Allah ever watches over you. And give to the orphans their property, and do not substitute worthless (things) for (their) good (ones), and do not devour their property (as an addition) to your own property; this is surely a great crime.
And if you fear that you cannot act equitably towards orphans, then marry such women as seem good to you, two AND three AND four (mathna WA thulatha WA rubaAAa); but if you fear that you will not do justice (between them), then (marry) only one or what your right hands possess; this is more proper, that you may not deviate from the right course. And give women their dowries as a free gift, but if they of themselves be pleased to give up to you a portion of it, then eat it with enjoyment and with wholesome result. S. 4:1-4 Shakir
6. Muslim women must breast feed male visitors.
Sahih Muslim Book 008, Number 3424: A’isha (Allah be pleased with her) reported that Sahla bint Suhail came to Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) and said: Messenger of Allah, I see on the face of Abu Hudhaifa (signs of disgust) on entering of Salim (who is an ally) into (our house), whereupon Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) said: Suckle him. She said: How can I suckle him as he is a grown-up man? Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) smiled and said: I already know that he is a young man. ‘Amr has made this addition in his narration that he participated in the Battle of Badr and in the narration of Ibn ‘Umar (the words are): Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) laughed.
Book 008, Number 3425: A’isha (Allah be pleased with her) reported that Salim, the freed slave of Abu Hadhaifa, lived with him and his family in their house. She (i. e. the daughter of Suhail came to Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) and said: Salim has attained (puberty) as men attain, and he understands what they understand, and he enters our house freely, I, however, perceive that something (rankles) in the heart of Abu Hudhaifa, whereupon Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) said to her: Suckle him and you would become unlawful for him, and (the rankling) which Abu Hudhaifa feels in his heart will disappear. She returned and said: So I suckled him, and what (was there) in the heart of Abu Hudhaifa disappeared.
7. The paradise of the Quran.
Wherein both will be those (maidens) restraining their glances upon their husbands, whom no man or jinn yatmithhunna (has opened their hymens with sexual intercourse) before them… Houris (beautiful, fair females) restrained in pavilions; Then which of the Blessings of your Lord will you both (jinns and men) deny? Whom no man or jinn yatmithhunna (has opened their hymens with sexual intercourse) before them. S. 55:56, 72-74 Hilali-Khan
8. Women mentally and spiritually deficient.
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri: Once Allah’s Apostle went out to the Musalla (to offer the prayer) on ‘Id-al-Adha or Al-Fitr prayer. Then he passed by the women and said, “O women! Give alms, as I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-fire were you (women).” They asked, “Why is it so, O Allah’s Apostle?” He replied, “You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone MORE DEFICIENT IN INTELLIGENCE and religion than you. A cautious sensible man could be led astray by some of you.” The women asked, “O Allah’s Apostle! What is deficient in our intelligence and religion?” He said, “Is not the evidence of two women equal to the witness of one man?” They replied in the affirmative. He said, “This is the deficiency in her intelligence. Isn’t it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast during her menses?” The women replied in the affirmative. He said, “This is the deficiency in her religion.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 6, Number 301)
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri: The Prophet said, “Isn’t the witness of a woman equal to half of that of a man?” The women said, “Yes.” He said, “This is because OF THE DEFICIENTCY OF A WOMAN’S MIND.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 48, Number 826)
9. Mohammed’s treatment of his wife Sauda.
Ibn Kathir on Sura 4:128: Making peace is better than separation. An example of such peace can be felt in the story of Sawdah bint Zam’ah who WHEN SHE BECAME AGED, THE PROPHET WANTED TO DIVORCE HER, but she made peace with him by offering the night he used to spend with her to A’isha so that he would keep her. The Prophet accepted such terms and kept her.
Abu Dawud At-Tayalisi recorded that Ibn ‘Abbas said, “Sawdah feared that the Messenger of Allah might divorce her and she said, ‘O Messenger of Allah! Do not divorce me; give my day to ‘A’ishah.’ And he did …
In the Two Sahihs, it is recorded that ‘A’ishah said that when Sawdah bint Zam’ah BECAME OLD, she forfeited her day to ‘A’ishah and the Prophet used to spend Sawdah’s night with ‘A’ishah …
IT REFERS TO THE WIFE RELINQUISHING SOME OF HER MARITAL RIGHTS and his acceptance of the offer. Such compromise is better than total divorce, as the Prophet did when retained Sawdah bint Zam’ah. By doing so, the Prophet set an example for his Ummah to follow as it is a lawful act … (the preceding citation taken and adapted from Tafsir Ibn Kathir – Abridged, Volume 2, Parts 3, 4 & 5, Surat Al-Baqarah, Verse 253, to Surat An-Nisa, Verse 147 [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors, Riyadh, Houston, New York, Lahore; first edition March 2000], pp. 599-601, and Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Part 5, Sura An-Nisa, ayat 24-147, abridged by Sheikh Muhammad Nasib Ar-Rafa’i [Al-Firdous Ltd., London, 2000 first edition], pp. 193-194; bold and capital emphasis ours)
10. Muslim woman is beaten until their skin is as green as her clothes.
Volume 7, Book 72, Number 715: Narrated ‘Ikrima: Rifa’a divorced his wife whereupon ‘AbdurRahman bin Az-Zubair Al-Qurazi married her. ‘Aisha said that the lady (came), wearing a green veil (and complained to her (Aisha) of her husband and showed her a green spot on her skin caused by beating). It was the habit of ladies to support each other, so when Allah’s Apostle came, ‘Aisha said, “I have not seen any woman suffering as much as the believing women. Look! Her skin is greener than her clothes!” When ‘AbdurRahman heard that his wife had gone to the Prophet, he came with his two sons from another wife.
She said, “By Allah! I have done no wrong to him but he is impotent and is as useless to me as this,” holding and showing the fringe of her garment, ‘Abdur-Rahman said, “By Allah, O Allah’s Apostle! She has told a lie! I am very strong and can satisfy her but she is disobedient and wants to go back to Rifa’a.” Allah’s Apostle said, to her, “If that is your intention, then know that it is unlawful for you to remarry Rifa’a unless Abdur-Rahman has had sexual intercourse with you.” Then the Prophet saw two boys with ‘Abdur-Rahman and asked (him), “Are these your sons?” On that ‘AbdurRahman said, “Yes.” The Prophet said, “You claim what you claim (i.e.. that he is impotent)? But by Allah, these boys resemble him as a crow resembles a crow,”
11. The majority of the people in hell, according to Mohammed, are women.
Sahih Bukhari: Vol. 1:28, 301; Vol. 2:161; Vol. 7:124-126.
Volume 7, Book 62, Number 124: Narrated Usama: The Prophet said, “I stood at the gate of Paradise and saw that the majority of the people who entered it were the poor, while the wealthy were stopped at the gate (for the accounts). But the companions of the Fire were ordered to be taken to the Fire. Then I stood at the gate of the Fire and saw that the majority of those who entered it were women.”
12. When women in Islam refuse to have sexual relations with their husbands, apparently they’re cursed by the angels.
Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: “The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘If a man calls his wife to his bed and she refuses [and does not come], and he spends the night angry with her, the angels will curse her until morning.’” (Reported by al-Bukhaari, 4794; the additional phrase quoted in square brackets is from Abu Dawood, al-Sunan, Kitaab al-Nikaah, Bab haqq al-zawj ‘ala’l-mar’ah).
Muslim: “By the One in Whose hand is my soul, there is no man who calls his wife to his bed and she refuses, but the One Who is above the heavens [i.e. Allaah] will be angry with her, until he (her husband) is pleased with her.” Ibn Khuzaymah and Ibn Hibbaan report a hadeeth narrated by Jaabir: “There are three whose prayers will not be accepted and none of whose good deeds will ascend to heaven: a runaway slave, until he returns to his master; a drunken man until he becomes sober; and a woman with whom her husband is angry, until he is pleased with her.”
13. An Islamic prayer is abrogated when either women or certain animals walk in front during.
Aisha: The things which annul the prayers were mentioned before me. They said, “Prayer is annulled by a dog, a donkey and a woman (if they pass in front of the praying people).” I said, “You have made us (i.e. women) dogs.”
Sahih Bukhari 1:9:490
Narrated ‘Aisha: It is not good that you people have made us (women) equal to dogs and donkeys.
Sahih Bukhari 1:90:498
14. Temporary marriage, also known as prostitution, was an active part of Mohammed’s mission.
Narrated Jabir bin ‘Abdullah and Salama bin Al-Akwa’: While we were in an army, Allah’s Apostle came to us and said, “You have been allowed to do the Mut’a (marriage), so do it.” Salama bin Al-Akwa’ said: Allah’s Apostle’s said, “If a man and a woman agree (to marry temporarily), their marriage should last for three nights, and if they like to continue, they can do so; and if they want to separate, they can do so.” I do not know whether that was only for us or for all the people in general. Abu Abdullah (Al-Bukhari) said: ‘Ali made it clear that the Prophet said, “The Mut’a marriage has been cancelled (made unlawful).”
Sahih Bukhari 7:62:52
Sabra Juhanni reported: Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) permitted temporary marriage for us. So I and another person went out and saw a woman of Bana ‘Amir, who was like a young long-necked she-camel. We presented ourselves to her (for contracting temporary marriage), whereupon she said: What dower would you give me? I said: My cloak. And my companion also said: My cloak. And the cloak of-my companion was superior to my cloak, but I was younger than he. So when she looked at the cloak of my companion she liked it, and when she cast a glance at me I looked more attractive to her. She then said: Well, you and your cloak are sufficient for me. I remained with her for three nights, and then Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: He who has any such woman with whom he had contracted temporary marriage, he should let her off.
Sahih Muslim 8:3252
15. The traditions even go so far as to claim any nation led by a female would be doomed to failure.
“Never will succeed such a nation as lets their affairs carried out by a woman.” (Bukhari, Maghazi, 82, Fitan, 18; Tirmidhi, Fitan, 75; Nasai, Qudat, 8; Ahmad b. Hanbal, V, 43, 51, 38, 47).
16. Muslim women can’t marry non-Muslim men, whereas Muslim men are allowed marital rights with regards to anyone.
Women can’t marry: “And give not (your daughters) in marriage to Al‑Mushrikoon till they believe (in Allaah Alone) and verily, a believing slave is better than a (free) Mushrik (idolater), even though he pleases you. Those (Al-Mushrikoon) invite you to the Fire, but Allaah invites (you) to Paradise and forgiveness by His Leave, and makes His Ayaat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) clear to mankind that they may remember [al-Baqarah 2:221]
Men can marry: “Made lawful to you this day are At‑Tayyibaat [all kinds of Halaal (lawful) foods, which Allaah has made lawful (meat of slaughtered eatable animals, milk products, fats, vegetables and fruits)]. The food (slaughtered cattle, eatable animals) of the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) is lawful to you and yours is lawful to them. (Lawful to you in marriage) are chaste women from the believers and chaste women from those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) before your time when you have given their due Mahr (bridal-money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage), desiring chastity (i.e. taking them in legal wedlock) not committing illegal sexual intercourse, nor taking them as girlfriends [al-Maa’idah 5:4]
Perhaps it’s best to bookend today’s article with the farewell speech of Mohammed’s, as it’s another tradition about women worthy of honourable (or dishonourable) mention:
Amr bin Shu’aib on his father’s authority said that his grandfather reported the Prophet (may peace be upon him) as saying: If one of you marries a woman or buys a slave, he should say: ‘O Allah, I ask Thee for the good in her, and in the disposition Thou hast given her; I take refuge in Thee from the evil in her, and in the disposition Thou hast given her.’ When he buys a camel, he should take hold of the top of its hump and say the same kind of thing.” Abu Dawud vol.2 no.2155 p.579
Tabari Vol 9, Number 1754 – “Treat women well, for they are [like] domestic animals with you and do not possess anything for themselves.” From Muhammad’s ‘Farewell Sermon’.
― T. C. M