Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Misconception of Shari'a. (Part 1)

I'm posting this post as a reply to Namir… The thing that bothered me wasn't the fact he's against the Islamic law being implemented in certain communities in the UK but rather the idea he has about what the Islamic laws are about and what they represent.

In this post, I'll put in 2 separate postings so you guys wouldn't get too overwhelmed with the reading.

Honestly, if my opinion is important I believe that the Law should stay the same in England but open the option for those who want to be governed in respect of their civil and personal matters by their own law.

Shari'a is Islamic law that invites Human brotherhood far from selfishness and personal interest for the sake of discarding hatred.

It is for the salvation of all mankind in an atmosphere of justice and equality surrounded by divine revelation and noble values within a sphere of ethical legislation that God has set for man.

I do understand why people might think that the laws allow subjugation and sexism. What people need to know is that it's not the Islamic Law that has faults. It's actually the men who are governing these laws. Outdated and awful traditions have heavily influenced these laws and so the actual Shari'a isn't properly followed anymore.

If you were to look at the Shari'a properly you'll find that it's filled with human rights; both for men and women. Islam calls for equality between all humans, doesn't matter what your race is, what your faith is, what your age and even sex.

"O mankind! Behold, We have created you all out of a male and a female, and have made you into nations and tribes, so that you might come to know one another. Verily, the noblest of you in the sight of God is the one who is most deeply conscious of Him. Behold, God is all knowing, all aware"
(Al Qur'an, Al Hujurat 49:13)

Islam gave to mankind an ideal code of human rights 14 centuries ago. These rights aim at conferring honor and dignity on mankind and eliminating exploitation, oppression and injustice.

Human rights in Islam are an integral part of the overall Islamic order and it is obligatory on all Muslims governments and organs of society to implement then in letter and in spirit within the frame work of that order.

It is unfortunate that Human rights are being trampled upon with impunity in many countries of the world, including Muslims countries. Such violations are matter of serious concern and are arousing the conscience of more and more people though out the world.

Here are some human rights in Islam. We'll start with women rights…

1) The wife's right to maintenance is protected by the law that if the husband refrains from fulfilling his obligations, he will lose his marital rights over her. She can sue him before the courts. His failure contributes a considerable reason (in such case that he continues rejecting her right to maintenance) for her to ask for divorce, regardless of whether he is rich or poor.
2) The wife's right to assisted in domestic work, by a home maid or servant, winds important consideration of Muslim jurists. In this concern the circumstances of the wife, in being used to have a servant before her marriage or in case her domestic responsibilities are beyond her scope, constitute additional weight to her right to assistance. It is reported of the Prophet (PBUH) that beside having servants, he used to help his family at home in this connection he says "… the best of you (men) are those who are the best to their wives."
3) According to the mutual rights and duties of spouses towards each other, their personality is considered important. Therefore a woman under Islamic law is not a part of her husband's personality, a fact which entitles her the right to keep her own family name whether she is married of not, that is on the same standing as a man. Accordingly 3 implications are drawn from that principle:

a) The economic and civil rights which entitle a woman the legal competence to have her own property, to invest her wealth and be a party in a business contract.
b) Her right to inherit from her husband
c) Her right to be satisfied sexually by her husband, just as she would satisfy him, that is, each spouse should respond to the sexual desire of the other. According to the law and as a precautionary measure to protect him or her, either should stand in need or be deprived of that natural requirement.

4) A woman's right to education has never been a disputable matter between Muslim Jurists. For instance, the Prophet (PBUH) used to teach women in special sessions. Furthermore, his wife 'A'isha was well known for her knowledge and the Prophet (PBUH) instructed Muslims to learn from her. According to his Hadith of knowledge is compulsory for all Muslims regardless of their sex.

And so on… These were just some of the rights that married women have in Islam.

According to Muslim jurists, a woman has the right to work. With that right she may respond to either her financial necessity or to satisfy the need of the Muslim community for female workers, particularly in education and medical fields.

That is just the gist of woman rights all together, there are a lot more.

To Be continued....

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