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In the Name of God بسم الله

Feminists

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What are you on about? All your points were addressed without the formation of a new religion, without suggesting that God was incapable. Why do you have to create an "enlightened, modernist" group

I can't speak for anyone else, but here is my problem with feminists... I understand that, throughout history, women have often been systematically oppressed. And a backlash against this was inevitabl

The example you gave is a gross misrepresentation of how feminists analyze aspects of Islamic thought and history. In fact, your entire post is a misrepresentation of feminism itself. You decided it m

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BAHAAHA I was just outside today admiring my reflection on my cars windshield when i saw one of the biggest and the baddest school buses being driven BY A HIJABI!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OH MY DAYSSSSSZAAAAA LMAOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

DOES THIS SEND UR 0 NEGATIVE BLOOD TEMP SOARING TO DIZZING HEIGHTS JACKSON, ALI MOHAMMAD and the rest of you??????????????

Cuz it sureee does mine!!!!!!!!

How can you ever trust a hijabi driving hundreds of children around in a large yellow tank with all those crazy gossipy reactions going on in her head..........

Gosh makes u wonder what has went wrong in the past 50 years.... whahabahajaah

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Yes, it would be wrong to say that women are less rational and more emotional than men because you would be subscribing to the same philosophy that Aristotle subscribed to, a philosophy you just finished called misogynistic. He says that women lack the "deliberative" part of the soul and can't use rationality to make decision.

Also, Aristotle advocates slave labor because he says that people are born slaves and born for physical rather than mental labor, so there is no virtue in physical strength. Feminism is not out to prove that women are physically stronger, this is something men use as a talking point to avoid the actual issues. You might believe that there are emotional, psychological barriers to women performing these tasks as well as men, but most psychologists would disagree with you. Not because society is designed in a way to turn women into "heartless mercenaries" but because these people are EDUCATED on these very real issues and can see past the rhetoric.

Aristotle is not a misogynist because he considers women to be more emotional than men, he is a misogynist because he considers that to be a negative thing. Frankly, I think reason has been the cause of a lot of systemic violence throughout history and so I don't have the same bias toward emotion that he (and many others) have.

And if it is so ridiculous to suggest that men make better soldiers, then what do you say to the US Army? The United States is a secular nation which subscribes to feminist ideology (and is, in some ways, the birthplace of feminist ideology). And yet, women are not allowed to be combat troops in the US armed forces.

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This entire thread is so full of misinterpretation, misrepresentations, and outright stupidity that I do not know where to begin. I am going to address a handful that I found particularly repugnant.

Yes, it would be wrong to say that women are less rational and more emotional than men because you would be subscribing to the same philosophy that Aristotle subscribed to, a philosophy you just finished called misogynistic. He says that women lack the "deliberative" part of the soul and can't use rationality to make decision.

Also, Aristotle advocates slave labor because he says that people are born slaves and born for physical rather than mental labor, so there is no virtue in physical strength. Feminism is not out to prove that women are physically stronger, this is something men use as a talking point to avoid the actual issues. You might believe that there are emotional, psychological barriers to women performing these tasks as well as men, but most psychologists would disagree with you. Not because society is designed in a way to turn women into "heartless mercenaries" but because these people are EDUCATED on these very real issues and can see past the rhetoric.

It isn't your religion, it is YOU. They look down on these societies because men believe there is virtue in saying that women are less emotionally and psychologically capable than men are. Instead of trying to fix this mentality, you attempt to victimize yourself and the ignorance of men in particular regions.

What kind of question is this? It is contradictory because most feminists would not accept the premise that they have to be saved first. Because we are HUMANS in practice it would be different, but in THEORY feminists do not believe they should be "saved first." It just shows you lack an understanding of what feminism actually means.

Maybe you should explore why they have this attitude? Maybe you should explore why women have this attitude around you in particular?

Ok.. I saw "lesbians" and "women get fatter and fatter" but once I managed to make it through the convoluted randomness I realized there was no substantive argument in sight. All I can say is, like most men who have posted here today, you lack a basic understanding of what feminism actually means.

I really could not agree more. This thread was painful.

GREAT POST. I have to agree. (By the way, in general, I take alimohamad40's posts to be a joke, they make me laugh everytime.)

I like the way you addressed the perceived lower intelligence of women and the whole "women and kids into lifeboat first". GREAT POST and GREAT POINTS. You are a breath of fresh air in this smog.

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It isn't your religion, it is YOU. They look down on these societies because men believe there is virtue in saying that women are less emotionally and psychologically capable than men are. Instead of trying to fix this mentality, you attempt to victimize yourself and the ignorance of men in particular regions.

Show me where I victimized myself.

And you don't know how wrong you are to paint me as some kind of backward chauvinist. You don't know me personally, and I can't really prove anything I say about myself on the internet. But I hope you believe me when I say I have the utmost respect for women. And unlike the liberals, my respect for women is not contrived. It is a sentiment I genuinely feel, and if I am ever lucky enough to get married, my wife will certainly see that I am being truthful. I mean business when I say this. My respect for women is beyond what you could possibly perceive. So you should stop making assumptions simply because I reject the liberal approach.

Naw... I'm just an insecure man. Anyone who doesn't fit your cookie cutter vision of what a 'progressive man' should be is an insecure chauvinist pig.

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Show me where I victimized myself.

And you don't know how wrong you are to paint me as some kind of backward chauvinist. You don't know me personally, and I can't really prove anything I say about myself on the internet. But I hope you believe me when I say I have the utmost respect for women. And unlike the liberals, my respect for women is not contrived. It is a sentiment I genuinely feel, and if I am ever lucky enough to get married, my wife will certainly see that I am being truthful. I mean business when I say this. My respect for women is beyond what you could possibly perceive. So you should stop making assumptions simply because I reject the liberal approach.

Naw... I'm just an insecure man. Anyone who doesn't fit your cookie cutter vision of what a 'progressive man' should be is an insecure chauvinist pig.

GREAT POST. I have to agree.

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Aristotle is not a misogynist because he considers women to be more emotional than men, he is a misogynist because he considers that to be a negative thing. Frankly, I think reason has been the cause of a lot of systemic violence throughout history and so I don't have the same bias toward emotion that he (and many others) have.

And if it is so ridiculous to suggest that men make better soldiers, then what do you say to the US Army? The United States is a secular nation which subscribes to feminist ideology (and is, in some ways, the birthplace of feminist ideology). And yet, women are not allowed to be combat troops in the US armed forces.

Reread this. Think about it for a second. Aristotle believes women lack the deliberative part of the soul, the ability to rationalize and think critically (this does not parallel your religious beliefs). He believes they are over-emotional creates who are inherently inferior to men. He also believes that people are born into slavery, that sexual communism is necessary, and that we should be brainwashed from extreme youth (also not so parallel). Now, we can have an academic discussion about whether or not Aristotle (like Socrates) was simply pushing limits in order to establish a point (which i would disagree with) but you are having a discussion about how Aristotle's primitive view of women is perfectly acceptable and WE are simply viewing it through tainted lenses.

You are suggesting that we are just biased? That women lacking in their soul and in their capabilities is perfectly acceptable? How is anyone supposed to take this seriously?

Also, who said anything about soldiers? If the United States does have a policy (and this will probably change soon enough) it does not necessarily make it infallible. The United States Army most certainly does not subscribe to "feminist ideology," if anything it is extremely unfair, sexist, and harmful to most women who do serve.

GREAT POST. I have to agree. (By the way, in general, I take alimohamad40's posts to be a joke, they make me laugh everytime.)

I like the way you addressed the perceived lower intelligence of women and the whole "women and kids into lifeboat first". GREAT POST and GREAT POINTS. You are a breath of fresh air in this smog.

Thanks and likewise! You keep it real :wub:

Show me where I victimized myself.

And you don't know how wrong you are to paint me as some kind of backward chauvinist. You don't know me personally, and I can't really prove anything I say about myself on the internet. But I hope you believe me when I say I have the utmost respect for women. And unlike the liberals, my respect for women is not contrived. It is a sentiment I genuinely feel, and if I am ever lucky enough to get married, my wife will certainly see that I am being truthful. I mean business when I say this. My respect for women is beyond what you could possibly perceive. So you should stop making assumptions simply because I reject the liberal approach.

Naw... I'm just an insecure man. Anyone who doesn't fit your cookie cutter vision of what a 'progressive man' should be is an insecure chauvinist pig.

I never called you a backwards chauvinist. You implied that Aristotle's viewpoints on women are perfectly acceptable, which is simply not the case. Maybe you lack a basic understanding of Greek philosophy, or maybe you just do not know how to form an argument without being convoluted. I don't pretend to know how you will treat your wife, or how sincere your feelings may be with her. You may be a great husband.. so what? How does that have anything to do with my disagreement with your arguments? That is a perfect example of you victimizing yourself.

I don't have a cookie cutter version of a "progressive man." I just happen to dislike stupid ones.

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Reread this. Think about it for a second. Aristotle believes women lack the deliberative part of the soul, the ability to rationalize and think critically (this does not parallel your religious beliefs). He believes they are over-emotional creates who are inherently inferior to men. He also believes that people are born into slavery, that sexual communism is necessary, and that we should be brainwashed from extreme youth (also not so parallel). Now, we can have an academic discussion about whether or not Aristotle (like Socrates) was simply pushing limits in order to establish a point (which i would disagree with) but you are having a discussion about how Aristotle's primitive view of women is perfectly acceptable and WE are simply viewing it through tainted lenses.

I am not defending Aristotle. He was by all accounts a misogynist, a homosexual, and an elitist. I don't like him, nor do I care for ancient Greece. The point I am trying to make is that Western society's partiality towards 'reason' and their rejection of emotion/intuition as lacking in importance stems from Aristotle's ideas. And the feminists' assertion that women are just as emotionally detached as men are shows that they share the same biases as Aristotle.

You are suggesting that we are just biased? That women lacking in their soul and in their capabilities is perfectly acceptable? How is anyone supposed to take this seriously?

Now you are just putting words in my mouth.

Also, who said anything about soldiers? If the United States does have a policy (and this will probably change soon enough) it does not necessarily make it infallible. The United States Army most certainly does not subscribe to "feminist ideology," if anything it is extremely unfair, sexist, and harmful to most women who do serve.

I did. I said that men were more capable at this job, and you debated this. What makes the US army sexist? The fact that drill sergeants question soldiers' sexuality? The fact that physical abuse is part of training? They have been doing that to male recruits for decades. If women are as good at being soldiers than men, they should be able to handle these hardships as well as men. They should be able to shrug aside this verbal and physical abuse as easily as men.

And if the current system is harmful to women, how does allowing women to become combat troops help that? Combat is nothing to be taken lightly, even in the US army (where infanteriemen have constant air and artillerie cover).

I never called you a backwards chauvinist. You implied that Aristotle's viewpoints on women are perfectly acceptable, which is simply not the case. Maybe you lack a basic understanding of Greek philosophy, or maybe you just do not know how to form an argument without being convoluted. I don't pretend to know how you will treat your wife, or how sincere your feelings may be with her. You may be a great husband.. so what? How does that have anything to do with my disagreement with your arguments? That is a perfect example of you victimizing yourself.

You never used those specific words. But you certainly implied it. And it is relevant because I have met many self-proclaimed 'feminists' who also happen to be womanizers (in other words, they are not willing to act upon the beliefs which they preach). We're all ordinary people; none of us have the power to implement policies that will affect society as a whole. And when all we have control over is our own personal behaviors and our own personal attitudes, then it is very important and very relevant to see how an individual man treats women.

I don't have a cookie cutter version of a "progressive man." I just happen to dislike stupid ones.

Thanks for the compliment :wub:

Nice to know I have friends

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WOW BABYBEAVERIS A KITKAT HOW BOUT FOR ONCE IN UR LIFE YOU recognize and acknowledge a brother standing up for your controversial causes and ideas. DONT U UNDERSTAND NO MATTER how profound, strong and mesmerizing Zahratuls arguments are to you, its the simple yet elegantly put arguments from male chauvinists like me that will TRULY further your cause. ITS HIGH TIME you started appreciating such rare spine tingling moments in sc's infant history. If you dont have anything nice to say, you can start by heading over to my profile and giving me a 5 star rating since it has taken a pounding lately and this severely hampers me from impressing the Akbars, Tayyebs and other 10 year olds of sc.

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^Hey! I used to drive a bus. :dry:

Really? Well then you might be interested in knowing school bus drivers in Canada are paid 1/3rd of what regular public transit drivers are. Minimum wage really, and yet its the public transit drivers that are always on strikes demanding higher wages. Anyways it was refreshing seeing a hijabi drive kids around.

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I am not defending Aristotle. He was by all accounts a misogynist, a homosexual, and an elitist. I don't like him, nor do I care for ancient Greece. The point I am trying to make is that Western society's partiality towards 'reason' and their rejection of emotion/intuition as lacking in importance stems from Aristotle's ideas. And the feminists' assertion that women are just as emotionally detached as men are shows that they share the same biases as Aristotle.

No, here is the difference, Aristotle advocated that ALL humans should leave behind emotion (actually, he did not advocate this, he criticizes Plato for advocating it) and you are suggesting that FEMALES are just more emotional and less "emotionally detached" than men, which I reject.

Well if study Aristotle you realize he is not speaking about Western society, he is speaking about ALL societies that are not brainwashed. The allegory of the cave which you are referring to (which is actually not Aristotle's doing but that of Plato) is one that wants us to eradicate what we "know" and realize that everything is subjective, etc. You have limited understanding of either of these philsophers coupled with complete confidence in everything you are saying.. a really bad combination

I did. I said that men were more capable at this job, and you debated this. What makes the US army sexist? The fact that drill sergeants question soldiers' sexuality? The fact that physical abuse is part of training? They have been doing that to male recruits for decades. If women are as good at being soldiers than men, they should be able to handle these hardships as well as men. They should be able to shrug aside this verbal and physical abuse as easily as men.

And if the current system is harmful to women, how does allowing women to become combat troops help that? Combat is nothing to be taken lightly, even in the US army (where infanteriemen have constant air and artillerie cover).

So because women do not thrive in a corrupt institution they are less capable? It isn't about drill sergeants yelling in your face, it is about men forcing themselves upon you and raping you. If you are talking about a mans physical superiority, I address that earlier. It is just a talking point people use to get on some random tangent that is irrelevant. There is no virtue in physical superiority, some of the least capable people in the world are great at menial labor. Feminists don't reject reality. People try to spin it that way to avoid discussing the legitimate, valid points they do bring up.

You never used those specific words. But you certainly implied it. And it is relevant because I have met many self-proclaimed 'feminists' who also happen to be womanizers (in other words, they are not willing to act upon the beliefs which they preach). We're all ordinary people; none of us have the power to implement policies that will affect society as a whole. And when all we have control over is our own personal behaviors and our own personal attitudes, then it is very important and very relevant to see how an individual man treats women.

Thanks for the compliment :wub:

Nice to know I have friends

I dont imply, I say what I mean to say.

Edited by Zahratul_Islam
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I'm profoundly disappointed by so many of the posts here. It highlights the difficulty of doing effective outreach here; you can do your effort as an individual, but then there are a dozen knuckle dragging who insist on shouting out their disturbing (mis) interpretations. It's a miracle and testament to the goodness of the essence of the faith that despite the fervent efforts of born Muslims to present Islam in such an unflattering light, that anyone does end up coming to the faith here. God be praised.

Well a discerning person is more than capable of ignoring the knuckle draggers however loud they shout. For the less discerning there is always the mods to appeal to, or do I detect a shade of criticism here?

I think you are putting a brave face on it! How many of the born Muslims are fleeing and what kind of people are being attracted to the faith? Shias doen't have a monopoly when it comes to knuckle draggers.

...

I dont imply, I say what I mean to say.

That wont stop others finding the strangest implications!

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The feminist movement used the ego of the woman and her love of possession to trick her that giving her full custody of the kids is giving her possession of the kids.. some thing that the sick and self-centric would long and hope for... I can own it and its MINE. But they dint tell her that she will bear the responsibility of the kid which will require her to be a mother and a father at the same time...

If smileys husband had Islamic ideals under Islamic conditions he would be forced to take responsibility for his kids cause Islam gives the early custody to the father...

One of the major crimes of The feminists is the millions of innocent babies murdered each year under the crime of abortion.

Crime B is the millions of old people dying slowly in retirement villages without knowing anything about their children.

Crime C is the millions of kids born and hit puberty and still cant know who are their parents.

the list goes on well beyond the English and or the greek alphabet,

The custody being fully for the woman and the woman expected to provide for the kids while the father gets away and does nothing, this makes the woman choose to kill her kid rather than have him.

Another major cause of abortion is the alleged human autonomy campaigns by the feminists... under the lie of human autonomy the woman is told to strip naked until some one fornicates with her and gets her pregnant. then the criminal tricks herself that she has a good enough reason to kill her innocent child with a total lack of remorse.

she is told that her value is her nude appearance which has to be present in public because she is a public property.

all the stuff i hear about the achievements of feminists are nothing but mirage...

women get the same pay.... ??? from a greedy business maker's perspective he wouldn't care what you are if you do better job he will pay you more... you could be a rat or a dog or a man or a woman... he wants his job done...

offcourse the woman is not designed for hard work in the society like the man is so she will be paid accordingly..

she has childbirth she she can not be committed all the time so what will the feminists say? god hates women he gave them child birth? or nature hates women?

as for those who say islam doesn't give women the same wage as a man for the same job i would ask have you read the Quran which is their constitution and number one source of legislation?

the versus prove the equality in the value between the female and male. Equality in the value doesn't mean they are identical,,, and it doesn't mean equality in hormones or equality in muscle power...

3:195

And their Lord hath accepted of them, and answered them: "Never will I suffer to be lost the work of any of you, be he male or female: Ye are members, one of another: Those who have left their homes, or been driven out therefrom, or suffered harm in My Cause, or fought or been slain,- verily, I will blot out from them their iniquities, and admit them into Gardens with rivers flowing beneath;- A reward from the presence of Allah, and from His presence is the best of rewards."

16:97

YUSUFALI: Whoever works righteousness, man or woman, and has Faith, verily, to him will We give a new Life, a life that is good and pure and We will bestow on such their reward according to the best of their actions.

Edited by alimohamad40
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The feminist movement used the ego of the woman and her love of possession to trick her that giving her full custody of the kids is giving her possession of the kids..

Yeah, it's not the fact that historically, women have been the sole caretakers of children; by virtue of mothering instinct. It's all about the ego of the woman and her love of possession. :huh: When you say these things, alimohamed...do you believe yourself?

Incidently, I don't agree with the trend in the US of favoring mothers over fathers with regards to custody. Men are just as capable of raising children. As I pointed out, historically, that has been the woman's domain, so that is why the lean towards mother custody. It doesn't make it right.

If smileys husband had Islamic ideals under Islamic conditions he would be forced to take responsibility for his kids cause Islam gives the early custody to the father...

smiley's ex doesn't sound like the most fit custodian, so in this case, I'd wager that she's glad she's not living in an 'Islamic' society then.

One of the major crimes of The feminists is the millions of innocent babies murdered each year under the crime of abortion.

Crime B is the millions of old people dying slowly in retirement villages without knowing anything about their children.

Crime C is the millions of kids born and hit puberty and still cant know who are their parents.

Those crimes you listed are crimes of a patriarchial society. Please remember that most of the world is ruled by men. I'm not saying that things would be better if ruled by women, I'm just pointing out that little fact to you. You make me smile though. "millions of old people dying slowly in retirement villages" ...it's those darn feminists. :lol:

The custody being fully for the woman and the woman expected to provide for the kids while the father gets away and does nothing, this makes the woman choose to kill her kid rather than have him.

You're absolutely right. And who's fault is it? The (patriarchial) society? The man who runs and shirks his responsibilty? Or the woman who gives in to fear or selfishness?

The answer is: All of the above.

Another major cause of abortion is the alleged human autonomy campaigns by the feminists... under the lie of human autonomy the woman is told to strip naked until some one fornicates with her and gets her pregnant. then the criminal tricks herself that she has a good enough reason to kill her innocent child with a total lack of remorse.

she is told that her value is her nude appearance which has to be present in public because she is a public property.

It's funny. I was born here and lived here my whole life. Nobody told me to strip naked and fornicate. They said, "stay in school" :lol:

all the stuff i hear about the achievements of feminists are nothing but mirage...

Just the vote and the right to not be beaten in the home. Still working on equal pay though.

women get the same pay.... ??? from a greedy business maker's perspective he wouldn't care what you are if you do better job he will pay you more... you could be a rat or a dog or a man or a woman... he wants his job done...

Check your facts. Google or something.

offcourse the woman is not designed for hard work in the society like the man is so she will be paid accordingly..

See above.

she has childbirth she she can not be committed all the time so what will the feminists say? god hates women he gave them child birth? or nature hates women?

Please see what Islam says on the subject.

as for those who say islam doesn't give women the same wage as a man for the same job i would ask have you read the Quran which is their constitution and number one source of legislation?

Who said that? I read this whole thread and I didn't see anyone say that... Perhaps I missed it.

the versus prove the equality in the value between the female and male. Equality in the value doesn't mean they are identical,,, and it doesn't mean equality in hormones or equality in muscle power...

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As salaamun alaykum,

Bro. MacIsaac asked why a Muslim woman would identify as a feminist, because Islam already incorporates the "best" of feminist ideology. While I don't believe in privileging one type of oppression over another, I recognize the command to dedicate one's efforts toward promoting good which includes breaking the shackles of oppression that anyone faces. I identify as anti-racist and have done some anti-racist work, I have friends who are environmentalists and have dedicated a lot of their lives to that cause. Islam is anti-racist and commands us to deal with natural resources justly and responsibly, but some people dedicate large amounts of their resources to one cause or another. There is nothing wrong in this, quite the opposite.

While we may have plenty in this deen that liberates women, the truth is that interpretations of Islamic law vary widely and some of that stuff *is* oppressive and dangerous. Real women suffer real harm because someone read a hadith that a little of their clitoris should be cut off, or that their genitals are the property of their husbands even when it causes them "harm" (because, you know, harm is up to interpretation) or that girl children can be molested, permanently damaged and then abandoned, or that ... the list is long and shameful. Many Muslim women run into brick walls when they are in abusive and unjust situations because those responsible for upholding justice fail to do so and use our primary sources Qur'an and hadith and the fiqh derived from those two sources to justify dhulm. Islamic feminism is about utilizing those same primary sources to reassert the principals of justice and compassion in the Qur'an and sunnah when dealing with women's issues.

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As salaamun alaykum,

Bro. MacIsaac asked why a Muslim woman would identify as a feminist, because Islam already incorporates the "best" of feminist ideology. While I don't believe in privileging one type of oppression over another, I recognize the command to dedicate one's efforts toward promoting good which includes breaking the shackles of oppression that anyone faces. I identify as anti-racist and have done some anti-racist work, I have friends who are environmentalists and have dedicated a lot of their lives to that cause. Islam is anti-racist and commands us to deal with natural resources justly and responsibly, but some people dedicate large amounts of their resources to one cause or another. There is nothing wrong in this, quite the opposite.

While we may have plenty in this deen that liberates women, the truth is that interpretations of Islamic law vary widely and some of that stuff *is* oppressive and dangerous. Real women suffer real harm because someone read a hadith that a little of their clitoris should be cut off, or that their genitals are the property of their husbands even when it causes them "harm" (because, you know, harm is up to interpretation) or that girl children can be molested, permanently damaged and then abandoned, or that ... the list is long and shameful. Many Muslim women run into brick walls when they are in abusive and unjust situations because those responsible for upholding justice fail to do so and use our primary sources Qur'an and hadith and the fiqh derived from those two sources to justify dhulm. Islamic feminism is about utilizing those same primary sources to reassert the principals of justice and compassion in the Qur'an and sunnah when dealing with women's issues.

+1

If "Islamic Feminism" is active promotion of rights afforded women through Islam then I, of course, support it.

Too often, rhetorical Islamic theory is one thing but Islamic practice, and accountabiliy for lack of Islamic practice, is another.

Edited by Maryaam
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wa `alaykum as-salaam,

That still doesn't address what you do when the two so obviously collide. The things I listed are not at all controversial examples but can be easily established through our primary sources. As can a number of others. Do we reject the primary sources then in favor of upholding some egalitarianism in line with feminist ideologies and thus re-do the Shari`a, or, do we admit the two are not compatible and stick with molding ourselves in accordance with our deen?

The claims of so-called Muslim feminists (male or female) about going back to the sources and re-discovering what Islam "really says" apart from the scholarship of centuries of jurists is incredibly hollow. Most of these folks won't spend a day actually researching our sources (if they're even capable of doing so with regards to language abilities, knowledge of authenticity, context, and so on), but instead come with a foregone ideologically motivated conclusion, then try to re-shape our religion to fit it using the most ridiculous examples to promote it. (One of the worst you'll see is how they'll cite the example of a wife of the Prophet (pbuh) having led a battle as being an example of how the earlier Muslims were clearly more in line with feminist thinking. Of course, they're talking about Aisha rebelling against the Imam (as)...)

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Aisha tried to be a feminist look what happened...........thought she could lead a battle against a man...but not just any man....Imam Ali (a.s.)

Syeda Fatimah (s.a) was not a feminist

You have to define what 'feminism' is before you can say who is and who is not a feminist. According to the OED

feminism

• noun the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of sexual equality.

By which definition, Islam is feminist.

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Oh right, I didn't know that man.

I suppose I don't imply the default term then.

Only these annoying blog ranting womens rites (bla bla) hijjabis

NOBODY READS BLOGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NOBODY CARES SISTAS

Just carry on with life, stop rallying for things like equal opportunity weddings and having your say over naming your child.

Nobody cares

Imam Ali (A.s) said there will come a time when people will be splitting hairs.

Women love to do that......and they also complain of split ends aswell!! DO MEN??? No!!!

Edited by SO SOLID SHIA
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That still doesn't address what you do when the two so obviously collide. The things I listed are not at all controversial examples but can be easily established through our primary sources. As can a number of others. Do we reject the primary sources then in favor of upholding some egalitarianism in line with feminist ideologies and thus re-do the Shari`a, or, do we admit the two are not compatible and stick with molding ourselves in accordance with our deen?

At one time such things were not controversial. To claim that are are not today is to be willingly obtuse.

It's not at all difficult to make the case that many or all of the examples you listed were historically specific accommodations to the 'urf of the time and place. Any other conclusion ends up making a mockery of the faith.

I mean, come on. Are you really going to argue in the 21st century that women are somehow inherently incapable of leadership, of scholarship, of giving accurate and credible testimony, of being equal partners in a marriage, or that they should not have an inherent right to seek divorce in a marriage?

I know you're not this ignorant; you clearly have some brains in your head.

I have to conclude that it's a matter of a basic lack of courage and confidence to think for yourself and to challenge the weight of tradition. How embarrassing and shameful is the spectacle of the shadow of a man so chained through his own cowardice.

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wa `alaykum as-salaam,

That still doesn't address what you do when the two so obviously collide. The things I listed are not at all controversial examples but can be easily established through our primary sources. As can a number of others. Do we reject the primary sources then in favor of upholding some egalitarianism in line with feminist ideologies and thus re-do the Shari`a, or, do we admit the two are not compatible and stick with molding ourselves in accordance with our deen?

The claims of so-called Muslim feminists (male or female) about going back to the sources and re-discovering what Islam "really says" apart from the scholarship of centuries of jurists is incredibly hollow. Most of these folks won't spend a day actually researching our sources (if they're even capable of doing so with regards to language abilities, knowledge of authenticity, context, and so on), but instead come with a foregone ideologically motivated conclusion, then try to re-shape our religion to fit it using the most ridiculous examples to promote it. (One of the worst you'll see is how they'll cite the example of a wife of the Prophet (pbuh) having led a battle as being an example of how the earlier Muslims were clearly more in line with feminist thinking. Of course, they're talking about Aisha rebelling against the Imam (as)...)

Like any ideology feminism has many interpretations, heck just like Islam. Unlike Islam there is no one pure feminism, it is dependent on the unique circumstances of those involved in the struggle to end women's oppression and even oppression is going to be defined differently. Actuallly, even that is like Islam as we often defer to 'urf when trying to sort out fiqh issues.

Muslim feminists and Islamic feminism (the two are not quite the same as the latter is an actual emerging academic discipline) fall under the big tent definition of feminism, so they don't necessarily feel that one part of themselves has to collide with the other. There are pro-life feminists who believe that the fetus' right to live is more important than a woman's autonomy, they are considered feminists. There are feminists who believe in submission, so long as it is truly a choice and those women's boundaries are respected by those they submit to, they are also considered feminists. Complicated questions exist in feminism and feminists of all sorts have wrestled with and continue to wrestle with those issues. I'm not really sure where you are coming from in terms of longstanding traditions.Times change, people's circumstances change and the law has always had some flexibility. Alhamdullilah, we are not sunnis.

In terms of the actual people engaging in this work, it seems that you've had some bad experiences. I've met plenty of people who I wouldn't trust at all either because of their shoddy conclusions, unreliable sources or just poor character, but I've also had the opportunity to engage with Sunni and Shi'a scholars many of whom have had education both in our howza system and Western institutions who certainly have mastery of Arabic, Farsi and solid understanding of the traditional ways our primary sources are used to derive fiqh. It's not all about women leading salaat. Sometimes its just about some pretty basic stuff like hitting and raping your wife is bad for your family.

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As salaamun alaykum,

You know, regardless of our perspectives I'd like to believe that we are all coming from the same place, a place of dedication to aligning our lives with tawhid and the principles that naturally derive from it. We are identified as the Shi'a of ahl al bayt (as) and our history is one of great sacrifice in the name of love. This is the dunya and it's a really murky place and its hard to struggle through these issues, but as brothers and sisters in this deen we can at least speak to each other with respect and try to come from a place of love. None of us can read one another's hearts, heck, we can't even read one another's facial expressions. No matter our disagreements we are not enemies and we should seek to strengthen our ties even when we disagree.

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At one time such things were not controversial. To claim that are are not today is to be willingly obtuse.

It's not at all difficult to make the case that many or all of the examples you listed were historically specific accommodations to the 'urf of the time and place. Any other conclusion ends up making a mockery of the faith.

I mean, come on. Are you really going to argue in the 21st century that women are somehow inherently incapable of leadership, of scholarship, of giving accurate and credible testimony, of being equal partners in a marriage, or that they should not have an inherent right to seek divorce in a marriage?

I know you're not this ignorant; you clearly have some brains in your head.

I have to conclude that it's a matter of a basic lack of courage and confidence to think for yourself and to challenge the weight of tradition. How embarrassing and shameful is the spectacle of the shadow of a man so chained through his own cowardice.

So when do we start marrying gays, kadhim? After all, time and place would tell us we should be getting with the trends on that one too.

See, thing is that I actually believe this religion is true. Thus, when it says that the halal of Muhammad and the haram of Muhammad (pbuh) are to last till yawm al-qiyama, I take it seriously. Do you think God was incapable of providing us with a religion that in fact would live up to its claim, that is, that it is the final one with the final Shari`a? Where do you get the authority to start revising this and that and doing what even the Ma`sum Imams (as) would not themselves do. If you actually would read their teachings, you'd see how we have hadiths for instance were the Imams (as) would decry the usage of opinion in religion, how they would even say that should they (the Imams) have said what they did based on their own views, they would have been destroyed. Rather, it is in transmitting what Allah has revealed through his Messenger (pbuh), who is the final prophet in its perfect, unadulterated form, without any new laws to come.

And where do you draw the line? You will claim that a number of its laws are somehow "timebound" yet you are inconsistent in your application of this. Actually, no you are consistent, in that its only laws that conflict with a modernist/feminist/liberal/whatever mentality that you feel the need to do away with, while more "neutral" laws regarding salat, fasting, etc., you don't seem to have much issue with.

In terms of confidence and cowardice, Allah is our judge. But what sounds more "courageous" to you? Doing away with all those aspects of your religion that are in conflict with the society and time you are from and living in, or, sticking with the teachings of your religion even where they are diametrically at odds with the society and culture surrounding you, and from which you also have come out of?

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^excellent reply.

Salaam

If you want to define feminism as 'justice and proper social rights for women (such as access to education, equal pay for equal work,etc, I don't think anyone who is just and rational and not living in the cave ages could argue with that.

...

A friend of mine did an excellent thesis comparing ideas of feminist thinkers to Islam to see how they compare.... I hope she can publish it in some broader form because she did a good job getting to the root of it rather than just giving propaganda, which is what a lot of people do. It was a very good analysis.

Great post. I'd like to see that thesis as well!

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wa `alaykum as-salaam,

That still doesn't address what you do when the two so obviously collide. The things I listed are not at all controversial examples but can be easily established through our primary sources. As can a number of others. Do we reject the primary sources then in favor of upholding some egalitarianism in line with feminist ideologies and thus re-do the Shari`a, or, do we admit the two are not compatible and stick with molding ourselves in accordance with our deen?

The claims of so-called Muslim feminists (male or female) about going back to the sources and re-discovering what Islam "really says" apart from the scholarship of centuries of jurists is incredibly hollow. Most of these folks won't spend a day actually researching our sources (if they're even capable of doing so with regards to language abilities, knowledge of authenticity, context, and so on), but instead come with a foregone ideologically motivated conclusion, then try to re-shape our religion to fit it using the most ridiculous examples to promote it. (One of the worst you'll see is how they'll cite the example of a wife of the Prophet (pbuh) having led a battle as being an example of how the earlier Muslims were clearly more in line with feminist thinking. Of course, they're talking about Aisha rebelling against the Imam (as)...)

The example you gave is a gross misrepresentation of how feminists analyze aspects of Islamic thought and history. In fact, your entire post is a misrepresentation of feminism itself. You decided it must collide with Islam and that this collision will require women to choose whether or not they will remain sincere to their religious beliefs. This is an inaccurate depiction that attempts to make reality black and white.. Islam vs Feminism.. It just simply is not the case

Feminism= the advocacy of woman’s rights on the grounds of sexual equality. (Props to Direc Delta Function)

This is open to interpretation even among feminists themselves. It does not necessarily have to contradict Islam, in fact it can be a great way to explore Islam and the rights it has given women. There are many places in the world that abuse these rights and deprive women of them, places that claim to be adhering to "Islamic" teachings. All these things are open to interpretation. It does not have to collide with your religious beliefs or create a barrier between a woman and her religious beliefs. People who argue that this is the result of feminism usually do not understand what feminism is and how it has helped build women in societies where different religions (including Islam) are practiced.

So when do we start marrying gays, kadhim? After all, time and place would tell us we should be getting with the trends on that one too.

See, thing is that I actually believe this religion is true. Thus, when it says that the halal of Muhammad and the haram of Muhammad (pbuh) are to last till yawm al-qiyama, I take it seriously. Do you think God was incapable of providing us with a religion that in fact would live up to its claim, that is, that it is the final one with the final Shari`a? Where do you get the authority to start revising this and that and doing what even the Ma`sum Imams (as) would not themselves do. If you actually would read their teachings, you'd see how we have hadiths for instance were the Imams (as) would decry the usage of opinion in religion, how they would even say that should they (the Imams) have said what they did based on their own views, they would have been destroyed. Rather, it is in transmitting what Allah has revealed through his Messenger (pbuh), who is the final prophet in its perfect, unadulterated form, without any new laws to come.

And where do you draw the line? You will claim that a number of its laws are somehow "timebound" yet you are inconsistent in your application of this. Actually, no you are consistent, in that its only laws that conflict with a modernist/feminist/liberal/whatever mentality that you feel the need to do away with, while more "neutral" laws regarding salat, fasting, etc., you don't seem to have much issue with.

In terms of confidence and cowardice, Allah is our judge. But what sounds more "courageous" to you? Doing away with all those aspects of your religion that are in conflict with the society and time you are from and living in, or, sticking with the teachings of your religion even where they are diametrically at odds with the society and culture surrounding you, and from which you also have come out of?

The issues and achievements that kadhim listed are not "trends." These are examples of how feminism has bettered the lives of women everywhere. It has absolutely nothing to do with "marrying gays." Maybe I am not following your logic here, or perhaps you are simply trying to dismiss a good argument by smearing it with something completely random.

No one is going to get rid of salat, fasting, etc in order to advance the cause of women. This is extremely paranoid and illogical. To paint a picture of a woman having to choose between her deen and her rights is simply unfair and inaccurate. You absolutely can be a woman who advocates sexual equality, female empowerment and still observes her religious obligations with sincerity and faith. You are drawing up lines that simply do not exist except in the minds of people who are not willing to accept anything but what has been ingrained in them.

I think a lot of people on this thread should stop imposing their version of feminism, Islamic teaching, and reality on everyone else.

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You decided it must collide with Islam and that this collision will require women to choose whether or not they will remain sincere to their religious beliefs. This is an inaccurate depiction that attempts to make reality black and white.. Islam vs Feminism.. It just simply is not the case

Try to be honest here. Do you think feminism (in whatever form) would be amenable to such laws as the prohibition of women being judges, the inadmissibility of women witnesses for certain legal matters or the need for their doubling (as compared to a man), the lesser amount of a woman's diyat (blood money), the differences in inheritance, the (general) absence of a woman's permission to divorce, the need for her husband's permission to leave the house, the requirements of hijab, and so on? While these might be "controversial" to certain folks who are ignorant of their religion's sources, they are not in the least controversial to one who studies them in an unbiased fashion. That is, looking to see what the sources actually state, not what one might want to make them state.

Feminism= the advocacy of woman’s rights on the grounds of sexual equality. (Props to Direc Delta Function)

And that premise would seem fundamentally wrong. I can't see how one might claim equality when you have such obvious legal and ethical differences in our Shar`ia. And I don't see how such a view is reconcilable to this verse in sura an-nisa:

ÇáÑøöÌóÇáõ ÞóæøóÇãõæäó Úóáóì ÇáäøöÓóÇÁ ÈöãóÇ ÝóÖøóáó Çááøåõ ÈóÚúÖóåõãú Úóáóì ÈóÚúÖò æóÈöãóÇ ÃóäÝóÞõæÇú ãöäú ÃóãúæóÇáöåöãú ÝóÇáÕøóÇáöÍóÇÊõ ÞóÇäöÊóÇÊñ ÍóÇÝöÙóÇÊñ áøöáúÛóíúÈö ÈöãóÇ ÍóÝöÙó Çááøåõ æóÇááÇøóÊöí ÊóÎóÇÝõæäó äõÔõæÒóåõäøó ÝóÚöÙõæåõäøó æóÇåúÌõÑõæåõäøó Ýöí ÇáúãóÖóÇÌöÚö æóÇÖúÑöÈõæåõäøó ÝóÅöäú ÃóØóÚúäóßõãú ÝóáÇó ÊóÈúÛõæÇú Úóáóíúåöäøó ÓóÈöíáÇð Åöäøó Çááøåó ßóÇäó ÚóáöíøðÇ ßóÈöíÑðÇ {34

The extreme emphasis on personal "rights" also seems wrong, as the Islamic perspective seems one more of personal responsibilities, with the ultimate responsibility being to God. Note, I'm not saying anything about who's going to get saved and end up in the Garden more. In that regard, I would find myself leaning to those traditions that would indicate it will the women who shall be more.

The issues and achievements that kadhim listed are not "trends." These are examples of how feminism has bettered the lives of women everywhere. It has absolutely nothing to do with "marrying gays." Maybe I am not following your logic here, or perhaps you are simply trying to dismiss a good argument by smearing it with something completely random.

Perhaps it's because you've not been reading kadhim's posts as much as I have. His perspective on the supposedly timebound nature of Islamic law is were I particularly disagree with him, it's not only in regards to feminist issues.

No one is going to get rid of salat, fasting, etc in order to advance the cause of women. This is extremely paranoid and illogical. To paint a picture of a woman having to choose between her deen and her rights is simply unfair and inaccurate. You absolutely can be a woman who advocates sexual equality, female empowerment and still observes her religious obligations with sincerity and faith. You are drawing up lines that simply do not exist except in the minds of people who are not willing to accept anything but what has been ingrained in them.

Religious obligations are not exclusively saying your prayers every day (though even there, I can also point to clear differences in the fiqh for women and men in the Shari`a). Obligations also encompass one's societal and family responsibilities and beliefs. I don't demarcate these as separate in this sense, that is, for my `ibada I'll follow my religion, but for my views on gender roles and society, I'll side with secular feminists. Why not go with the religion for all of that? And it isn't a matter of saying "oh but I do, I follow justice and compassion as my religion says". While that's fine and good, our religion is a lot more specific on the details than only having moral principles.

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Try to be honest here. Do you think feminism (in whatever form) would be amenable to such laws as the prohibition of women being judges, the inadmissibility of women witnesses for certain legal matters or the need for their doubling (as compared to a man), the lesser amount of a woman's diyat (blood money), the differences in inheritance, the (general) absence of a woman's permission to divorce, the need for her husband's permission to leave the house, the requirements of hijab, and so on? While these might be "controversial" to certain folks who are ignorant of their religion's sources, they are not in the least controversial to one who studies them in an unbiased fashion. That is, looking to see what the sources actually state, not what one might want to make them state.

And that premise would seem fundamentally wrong. I can't see how one might claim equality when you have such obvious legal and ethical differences in our Shar`ia. And I don't see how such a view is reconcilable to this verse in sura an-nisa:

الرِّجَالُ قَوَّامُونَ عَلَى النِّسَاء بِمَا فَضَّلَ اللّهُ بَعْضَهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ وَبِمَا أَنفَقُواْ مِنْ أَمْوَالِهِمْ فَالصَّالِحَاتُ قَانِتَاتٌ حَافِظَاتٌ لِّلْغَيْبِ بِمَا حَفِظَ اللّهُ وَاللاَّتِي تَخَافُونَ نُشُوزَهُنَّ فَعِظُوهُنَّ وَاهْجُرُوهُنَّ فِي الْمَضَاجِعِ وَاضْرِبُوهُنَّ فَإِنْ أَطَعْنَكُمْ فَلاَ تَبْغُواْ عَلَيْهِنَّ سَبِيلاً إِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ عَلِيًّا كَبِيرًا {34

The extreme emphasis on personal "rights" also seems wrong, as the Islamic perspective seems one more of personal responsibilities, with the ultimate responsibility being to God. Note, I'm not saying anything about who's going to get saved and end up in the Garden more. In that regard, I would find myself leaning to those traditions that would indicate it will the women who shall be more.

Perhaps it's because you've not been reading kadhim's posts as much as I have. His perspective on the supposedly timebound nature of Islamic law is were I particularly disagree with him, it's not only in regards to feminist issues.

Religious obligations are not exclusively saying your prayers every day (though even there, I can also point to clear differences in the fiqh for women and men in the Shari`a). Obligations also encompass one's societal and family responsibilities and beliefs. I don't demarcate these as separate in this sense, that is, for my `ibada I'll follow my religion, but for my views on gender roles and society, I'll side with secular feminists. Why not go with the religion for all of that? And it isn't a matter of saying "oh but I do, I follow justice and compassion as my religion says". While that's fine and good, our religion is a lot more specific on the details than only having moral principles.

All of these things CAN be reconciled with Islamic feminism. Feminism is not about redefining women's rights. In a lot of instances it is about implementing these things that can be in agreement with Islamic teaching, especially in places where they are not implemented (which includes many Islamic countries). It is not a secular movement that requires women to give up their religious beliefs.

Again, you are using the same arguments I addressed before. You did not address the questions I asked and you continue to make this an issue of "Islam vs Feminism" which simply is not the case.

If you want to narrow this argument down to "if you had to choose.. would you choose Islam or feminism?" then you would be hard pressed to find someone on this forum who would

A.) Take your understanding of feminism seriously (jk.. there are plenty of those)

B.) pick the latter

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The extreme emphasis on personal "rights" also seems wrong, as the Islamic perspective seems one more of personal responsibilities, with the ultimate responsibility being to God.

Doesn't this sound a little like an excuse not to give women their rights?

All of these things CAN be reconciled with Islamic feminism. Feminism is not about redefining women's rights. In a lot of instances it is about implementing these things that can be in agreement with Islamic teaching, especially in places where they are not implemented (which includes many Islamic countries). It is not a secular movement that requires women to give up their religious beliefs.

EXACTLY!

The issues and achievements that kadhim listed are not "trends." These are examples of how feminism has bettered the lives of women everywhere. It has absolutely nothing to do with "marrying gays." Maybe I am not following your logic here, or perhaps you are simply trying to dismiss a good argument by smearing it with something completely random.

No one is going to get rid of salat, fasting, etc in order to advance the cause of women. This is extremely paranoid and illogical. To paint a picture of a woman having to choose between her deen and her rights is simply unfair and inaccurate. You absolutely can be a woman who advocates sexual equality, female empowerment and still observes her religious obligations with sincerity and faith. You are drawing up lines that simply do not exist except in the minds of people who are not willing to accept anything but what has been ingrained in them.

I concur!

Do you think feminism (in whatever form) would be amenable to such laws as the prohibition of women being judges, the inadmissibility of women witnesses for certain legal matters or the need for their doubling (as compared to a man), the lesser amount of a woman's diyat (blood money), the differences in inheritance, the (general) absence of a woman's permission to divorce, the need for her husband's permission to leave the house, the requirements of hijab, and so on?

I don't see why some of these couldn't be reinterpreted to fit within the bounds of Islam-- and by that, I mean, for example, inheritance (depending on the situation-- a woman may not have a male to support her and she may have dependents). I heard in a lecture that scholars (Sunni, I think) in Muslim societies would sometimes rule in favor of giving more of the inheritance to a woman if they deemed it necessary based on the situation. Or, for example, witnesses in societies where women were educated to be equivalently knowledgeable as a male witness.

I actually didn't know that about women's blood money being less (I don't know much about blood money to begin with). What justification is there for that?

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I actually didn't know that about women's blood money being less (I don't know much about blood money to begin with). What justification is there for that?

The most likely reason in an earlier time is the same as that for women receiving half the inheritance share of the equivalent male; women were generally financially dependents. It was not customary for them to work, or at least not customary for them to be the breadwinners of the household. Diyat is largely analogous to the western concept of civil damages. In the case of a woman, a family was losing a family member. In the case of a man, there was the added loss of an income earner or labourer.

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^That's the justification I assumed. But again, if the situation is different, where the woman was the primary breadwinner or something, then I would assume that since the justification for the rule didn't hold, the rule wouldn't hold there either.

Indeed. It is difficult not to reach that conclusion. Much as, in a time when the Islamic call for both men AND women to seek knowledge has been answered en masse, it no longer makes sense to prevent qualified women from being judges or religious scholars, or for women's ability to give accurate testimony to be considered less.

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Indeed. It is difficult not to reach that conclusion. Much as, in a time when the Islamic call for both men AND women to seek knowledge has been answered en masse, it no longer makes sense to prevent qualified women from being judges or religious scholars, or for women's ability to give accurate testimony to be considered less.

You're going to get flak for saying that, but certainly not from me. Bravo for making this statement!!

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So when do we start marrying gays, kadhim? After all, time and place would tell us we should be getting with the trends on that one too.

Red herring.

See, thing is that I actually believe this religion is true.

I also believe that the real religion of Muhammad is true. That is precisely why I reject in this day and age laws that are inconsistent with the principles of growth that Muhammad brought.

Thus, when it says that the halal of Muhammad and the haram of Muhammad (pbuh) are to last till yawm al-qiyama, I take it seriously.

The basic empirical reality is that while the overarching principles he taught and the goals toward which he and his descendants strove remain relevant and growth promoting, certain laws which were the realization of these principles 12-14 centuries ago are no longer consistent with these principles.

Do you think God was incapable of providing us with a religion that in fact would live up to its claim, that is, that it is the final one with the final Shari`a?

It depends on what one means by religion. If one understands religion as a set of general principles, goals, guidelines, then it is certainly possible to give a timeless set of such guidelines, particularly if detailed guidance is given to show how those guidelines are applied in a particular set of circumstances as an example. If you think religion is a set of rigid rules, then no, quite frankly not even God can give a set of rigid rules encompassing all social, economic, household, and political relationships that will stand the test of time, for the same reason that God, omnipotent and all-knowing as He is, cannot create a square circle. A valid set of laws promotes thriving and growth, and an all-encompassing set of specific laws can only remain relevant indefinitely in a state of stagnation.

For a system of law to be able to remain relevant and fruitful, it must have some basic, fundamental principles, but have the flexibility to adapt as the conditions of life change over time. Otherwise the system is over-constrained.

For one to believe that the specific laws of the time of the prophet were meant to last for all time, one would need to believe that the state of society at the time was at a position such that Islamic principles were perfectly realized. Given the widespread lack of education amongst females, the widespread practice of slavery, and other similar phenomena at the time of the prophet's death, this is a difficult position to defend.

In a sub-optimal situation where women de facto are uneducated and disrespected, does it make sense to not have women judges and leaders, and to require two women for one man to ensure that the integrity of witness is respected? Yes. But is it not true that part of the program of Islam was to change thius underlying reality of ignorance and low status amongst women? Indisputably so.

Is it not similarly clear that when this underlying reality changes, that laws based on that reality should also change? Yes.

And where do you draw the line? You will claim that a number of its laws are somehow "timebound" yet you are inconsistent in your application of this. Actually, no you are consistent, in that its only laws that conflict with a modernist/feminist/liberal/whatever mentality that you feel the need to do away with, while more "neutral" laws regarding salat, fasting, etc., you don't seem to have much issue with.

Well, actually, salat, fasting, hajj, zakat, and khums and the principle of modesty in dress in conduct are not "neutral" things. I am rather surprised to hear a self-proclaimed Muslim call them so. All of these things in point of fact are growth promoting practices encouraging the development of individuals and society. In addition, these practices do not impose any injustice on anyone, nor do they block anyone from reaching their God-given potentials.

In terms of confidence and cowardice, Allah is our judge. But what sounds more "courageous" to you? Doing away with all those aspects of your religion that are in conflict with the society and time you are from and living in, or, sticking with the teachings of your religion even where they are diametrically at odds with the society and culture surrounding you, and from which you also have come out of?

You present a false characterization of the choice. It quite depends on why the particular law is at odds with the general mores of the society.

If it is because the society in this regard has declined, and pursued a retrograde path, as, for example, we see in the spread of unregulated pre-marital sex, then certainly we should stand our ground, because we do so on sound principle against a destructive principle.

But if the particular law is at odds with the society because the Islamic establishment itself has stagnated with respect to the issue and the society at hand has actually moved ahead of the Muslims in terms of realizing the relevant Islamic principle, for example, the principle of educating all, male or female in the case of women as judges and leaders, then we should similarly stand for Islam, but in this case by calling for change within the Muslim establishment to "catch up" where others have gone ahead of us.

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Tell you what kadhim. Personal opinion means very little to me, less than nothing in fact when it comes to deciding what true religion is. So, unless you've decided to make up your own religion were you decide what the rules are yourself, if evidently you think God was incapable of doing so, how about you actually try proving your claims by the religion itself? I mean, if it's all that clear that you've got it right, while centuries of Islamic scholarship have gotten it wrong, well, go ahead and prove it. Show me where the Prophet (pbuh) and his successors (as) taught these things, where they told us that there'd come a time when we could throw in the dust bin those rules they instructed us in, and make up new ones in order to "keep up with the times". Shouldn't be too hard if it's really that evident and clear. So go ahead, share with us where you think they've taught such things? And please, nothing ambiguous and subjective. You're making some mighty high flying claims here, so you'd better have something pretty strong to show for it.

Again, I've zero interest in you bedazzling us with intellectual smugness and confidence of how enlightened you think you are as compared to those you consider knuckle draggers. Nor am I interested in how you might be able to quote a modernist scholar or two who agrees with this. I don't care about their opinions either. I want to hear it from the Ma`sumeen (as) themselves. So, show us your proof from those we have to obey, if you are truthful.

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