Religious Discourse

Status of Woman in Islam

By: Ummul Khair

Islam has raised the status of woman from below to so high that paradise lies under her feet. According to Muslim principles, the woman role apart from being a mother and a wife also posits many roles in context of the modern society. In the Islamic tradition a woman has an independent identity. She is responsible being in her own rights and carries the burden of her moral and spiritual obligations. She has the right to study Islamic teachings for her personal guidance same as the male do.
The prophet of Islam, Muhammad (peace be upon him) was sent by Allah Almighty, among many other things, to elevate the status of woman and maintain their honor. But before the arrival of the prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) many local customs were prevalent among tribes of Arab which were not in favour of Muslim woman’s. They were given no rights and were treated like commodity which they can use anytime. Many prevalent customs and laws were changed by the prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to improve the social position of woman in society.The purdah system among Muslim is regarded as one of the major factor for progress of woman in Muslim-society.
Muslim woman’s were the first in the history of mankind to receive inheritance. She is a daughter and sister and like their male brothers and born from the same womb as male do. She is also a mother who should be appreciated that she carries you [in her womb] the way nobody carries anybody during her pregnancy and protects you patiently from all her sufferings, worries , pains, difficulties and sorrows till the hand of Allah removed you from her and brought you into this world. She is also a wife who is a source of comfort for her husband as he is to her : {And among his signs in this; that he created wives from among yourselves, that you may dwell in tranquility with them, and he has put love and mercy between your (hearts)} (Surat Al-Rum (30), ayah 21). Allah also said : {They are like a garment to you and you are like a garment to them } (Surat Al- Baqara (2),ayah 187).
Islam protects the rights of the woman by considering her as the finest thing in this world as said by the messenger of Allah: ” The world is but enjoyment, and the finest enjoyment is a righteous woman (wife)” (Al muslim:1467). She is responsible for conveying and communicating Islam. she has full financial status that is no less than that of man. She has the right in the same way as man do to possess all types of wealth. Islam had also protected their rights by granting all her civil rights. Even a marriage is not valid in the Sharia’ah of Allah without the approval, acceptance and consent of the women. It has removed her permanent state of being minor and gave her right of guardianship over her property and other affairs. Thus woman had received a great honor in Islam.

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