Islam is a feminist religion
Islam is a feminist religion. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was an employee of his wife’s business. His wife, Khadija, was a businesswoman in her own right, and 15 years older than Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Khadija is the first convert Muslim if we consider Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to be born as a Muslim. In the Koran, there is an entire chapter on women, but unfortunately self-proclaimed leaders, predominantly men, distort the religion over the centuries in their own interest. Clearly, Islam as a religion and Muslim cultures is not the same. Some Muslim cultures are very sexist, patriarchal and do not give equal rights to the women. Muslim cultures in individual countries are also very different, for example, Southeast Asia, Middle East and Africa will have vast differences. Muslim cultures are very fluid and can change, but religion cannot be changed.
Often in western countries, we hear mostly from (self-proclaimed) male leaders talk about violence against women, women’s dress/clothing and what is right or wrong for women. I guess that shows the power men exercise over women, even in the 21st century. It is very rare that women have the opportunity to answer, and very few women ready to answer due to the potential backlash they will face from the community in general. We’d like to take the opportunity to congratulate Yassmin Abdel-Magied for speaking out as a Muslim woman in Australia where she says “Islam to me is one of the most, is the most feminist religion.”
The current climate in the world, where Islamophobia is spreading all over western countries manifests in Muslim women and children being attacked within the wider community. Muslim women throughout the world are being targeted.
Islam is a very peaceful religion, and in saying that, it would be a joke in the current environment, but Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon on him) always refused to attack anybody. He talked about defence. For Muslim women, it’s not just the attack from the society they are in within western countries, the violence against Muslim women is also very real and an everyday phenomena at home. This kind of article only triggers violence inside and outside the home. It gives men the right to use violence.
Both Australian and NZ Federation of Islamic Council need to practice gender equality within their organisation framework, where women need to be responding to the issues concerning women. That will bring a change.