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In the Name of God بسم الله

Feminism and Islam

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Salam,

within the western society that I live in, feminism has become the new craze and it seems everyone is identifying as a feminist. I am a female myself and of course, believe we as women deserve the same place in the workplace as men as well as the rights to make our own decisions. However to what extent does that go with Islamic beliefs?

Of course, a Muslim woman has her rights named by religion but since feminism revolves around men and women being equal, doesn't that go against Islamic thought?

I'm honestly not sure whether I want to identify as a feminist or not.

Please let me know your opinions!

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Islam gave women rights before half of this world gave women rights. Now a days women rights in West is very difficult and too overboard for example women in the West wanna be to able go to the beach without a bra because men go shirtless to the beach and they also want the right to dress how ever they want (in other words dress half nake). If I was in your position I wouldn’t really label myself just a feminist but a Muslim feminist. Women in the West want to basically act like men and specifically man hoers which is really disgusting for a girl and disgusting in general. 

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[MOD NOTE: Mature subject matter. If you find a video offensive, turn it off. Report if necessary.]

Terror in Texas -the James Tumlinson case (warning to all families)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IV8W0ZFswDA

The Bleeping NXIVM connection (*** cult)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rf9RVamYDJo

Edited by Hameedeh
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On 5/22/2018 at 9:16 PM, Ashvazdanghe said:

Salam I watched them both videos they are not contains offensive video or image I just repeat titles of videos .

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My Feminist Qur’an challenge (Ahlulbayt Tv documentary) (in some scenes dress code of Interviewr is not appropriate)

https://youtu.be/p0v7K3-kBUA

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The fact that sayeda Zainab owned her own land, that Seyeda the Khadija was a businesswoman all proves that Islam is feminist. It promotes and believes in the equality of the sexes. If you claim that Islam is not feminist (believing in the equality of both sexes) it's probably the most ignorant statement you could make. 

 

Edited by Amira00
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3 minutes ago, starlight said:

@Amira00 The fact that Syeda Zainab (as) still asked for her husband's permission to accompany her brother on a journey and Hazrat Khadija(as) was totally obedient to her husband shows feminism in Islam differs from the feminist movement of the west. 

Okay, could you explain what feminism in Islam is then? What makes Islam feminist according to the actual definition? Not the radicalized idea of feminism.

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9 hours ago, Amira00 said:

The fact that sayeda Zainab owned her own land, that Seyeda the Khadija was a businesswoman all proves that Islam is feminist. It promotes and believes in the equality of the sexes. If you claim that Islam is not feminist (believing in the equality of both sexes) it's probably the most ignorant statement you could make. 

Islam does not promote uniformity between the sexes. There is most definitely a difference in the responsibilities, abilities and limitations imposed on each. How flexible these impositions may be can be debated - and is, among scholars - but that they exist cannot be denied. Though, of course, just as the slavery of the West is nothing like the slavery of Islam, the differences between men and women in Islam are not like the differences promulgated by Victorian men, for example.

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40 minutes ago, Amira00 said:

The advocacy of women's rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes. 

As a dimorphic religion, Islam is more about equity than equality. It treats the sexes differently with the goal of justice. This is why different laws exist for marriage, warfare, inheritance, clothing, salat/fasting, and other areas. To say that the sexes are equal (like 1=1, 2=2) is to deny that they are distinct and have different needs. So looking at women's rights through the lens of what men can do is really an illusion.

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2 minutes ago, Khadim uz Zahra said:

Islam does not promote uniformity between the sexes. There is most definitely a difference in the responsibilities, abilities and limitations imposed on each. How flexible these impositions may be can be debated - and is, among scholars - but that they exist cannot be denied. Though, of course, just as the slavery of the West is nothing like the slavery of Islam, the difference in men and women in Islam is not like the differences promulgated by Victorian men, for example.

I agree. My point is that, Islam gives women rights. It doesn't make them inferior to men. Each sex has its own rights and responsibilities, but neither is restricted by them. For example, Sayeda Zainab still had to get permission from her husband to leave the house, but that didn't mean she couldn't own her own land. She was still indeoendant, her speach in muharram is a prime example of her independace.

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Just now, Amira00 said:

I agree. My point is that, Islam gives women rights. It doesn't make them inferior to men. Each sex has its own rights and responsibilities, but neither is restricted by them. For example, Sayeda Zainab still had to get permission from her husband to leave the house, but that didn't mean she couldn't own her own land. She was still indeoendant, her speach in muharram is a prime example of her independace.

Giving women rights is not the same as modern feminism, which requires women to be given exactly the same rights as men. That is a rather monumental difference.

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4 minutes ago, Qa'im said:

As a dimorphic religion, Islam is more about equity than equality. It treats the sexes differently with the goal of justice. This is why different laws exist for marriage, warfare, inheritance, clothing, salat/fasting, and other areas. To say that the sexes are equal (like 1=1, 2=2) is to deny that they are distinct and have different needs. So looking at women's rights through the lens of what men can do is really an illusion.

Is it really that much of an illusion though? Yes, men and women are physically different, but Islam (from what I know of) does not make one thing halal for one sex and haram for the other (other than the marrying out of Islam, mutliple wives etc). For example, a woman has the same capability as her male counterpart in a job in an office for example. A man can also cook, just as well as a woman. A man can raise his children just as well as his wife. 

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The idea of feminism in Islam is not a seperate 'ism or seperate 'movement'. It is enfolded within the idea of 'Haqq', sometimes translated as 'truth' or 'rights' but really there is no good word for word translation in English. The idea of Haqq is that everything in the universe, including every sentient creation has certain rights and has it's place in the order of creation. This is explained in one of the first books about Islamic Law, Resalat Al Huquq(Treaty of Haqq) by Imam Zain Al Abeddin(a.s). I suggest you look thru this to further understand the idea of Haqq. Here is the book

https://www.al-islam.org/treatise-rights-risalat-al-huquq-imam-zain-ul-abideen

At the pinnacle of sentient beings are human beings, because we have free will (i.e. we can choose whether to obey God or disobey). This includes both men and women. Women have their place in the pinnacle of creation, and they are thought of as human beings, just as a man is. If you look at the prevailing thought in 6th Century Arabia and probably anywhere in the world in the 6th century, women were not thought of as a human being with rights, but as property of her husband or a soulless creature. Islam never viewed women that way. They were viewed as fully human and with their rights (Haqq) from the beginning of the religion. If you look at the above book, you will see that most of these rights apply to women as well as men, and from that standpoint there is not much difference between the two. At the same time, women and men are not identical in their creation and there are a few areas in which the Haqq of men and the Haqq of women differ. I am not going to go over these areas in this post, because I think that goes beyond the scope of your question, but this is the general framework within which the Western idea of 'feminism' exists in Islam. 

IMHO, feminism was, at first, a reaction to the lack of Haqq (justice and rights) endured by women in Western society. Now that the vast majority of these lack of rights and justice have been addressed, both legally and culturally, I don't think it is relevant anymore. I think now what it has become is an attempt to 'turn the tables' and create a female dominated society, as opposed the male dominated society of the past. I think this is what is annoying to most women who don't consider themselves 'feminists'. 

Edited by Abu Hadi
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The essay 'Islam versus Feminism' by Dr. Muhammad Legenhausen is the most erudite, thorough and comprehensive writing that I have read on the subject, and the arguments have been presented with a great intellectual depth.
Sharing it here so that the brothers and sisters may benefit from it. An immensely useful piece of writing.
https://www.al-islam.org/islam-versus-feminism-dr-muhammad-legenhausen

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5 hours ago, Amira00 said:

Is it really that much of an illusion though? Yes, men and women are physically different, but Islam (from what I know of) does not make one thing halal for one sex and haram for the other (other than the marrying out of Islam, mutliple wives etc). For example, a woman has the same capability as her male counterpart in a job in an office for example. A man can also cook, just as well as a woman. A man can raise his children just as well as his wife. 

You’re correct that in Islam, a mother has no shar’i obligation to cook, clean, or even breastfeed her children. She can even stipulate some of these things in her contract. She can work most of the same jobs as men. But the full equality pushed by feminists is one that would destroy Islamic ethics and law.

For example: As you know, the Quran obligates half the inheritance of men. Some Muslim feminists cry foul that women receive less inheritance than men. But they overlook that women receive a dower and men don’t, and women are entitled to some of her husband’s earnings, yet men don’t share that privilege.

So if we start chopping away at one gendered law, the logical conclusion would be to get rid of all gendered laws, and just adopt a liberal individualist approach to fiqh. This however would be unjust, because it does not address the different needs and abilities of the sexes. It also calls into question the infallibility of the revelation: if it needs updates every few years (and yes, feminism is a constantly changing ideology; there have been three major waves in the last century), then that calls into question the foresight of Allah and His Messenger, who are both beyond reproach once you have recognized the realities of iman.

Other examples of dimorphic laws: hijab, salat and fasting in menstruation, polygamy, guardian permission in marriage, marrying non-Muslims, sharing wealth in marriage, the obligation of working for men, conscription for men, contact with non-mahrams, etc.

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5 hours ago, Amira00 said:

Is it really that much of an illusion though? Yes, men and women are physically different, but Islam (from what I know of) does not make one thing halal for one sex and haram for the other (other than the marrying out of Islam, mutliple wives etc). For example, a woman has the same capability as her male counterpart in a job in an office for example. A man can also cook, just as well as a woman. A man can raise his children just as well as his wife. 

Males can't wear gold or silk. 

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So I guess in the end, Islam is for equity between the two sexes rather than equality. Although in Islam a woman is guaranteed her rights as a wife etc, Islam itself still places more value, freedom, and responsibility towards the man which in itself isn't feminist. 

Feminism consists of many things, some of which are in the workplace and others based on an equality of treatment. When a man inherits more than a woman Islamically then that would be the antithesis of a large portion of feminist ideology. 

So I guess in conclusion, I can't fully identify as a feminist despite the fact that I support most of what feminism stands for. 

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Women and men have equally important but unique and different roles to play.  

 

There is a reason why non of the Prophets were females.  Because females have what no prophets could do: I.e. bear a child.   

 

So so how could feminism (equality between male and female: which amounts to the destruction or negation of the two genders) be valid?

 

Edited by eThErEaL
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On 5/23/2018 at 10:31 AM, Amira00 said:

I just find it so frustrating that a lot of people don't consider themselves feminist because they don't like how "radical modern feminism" is. Feminism is feminism. The dictionary definition of feminism is 'the belief that both genders should be treated equally'.

Sister, you can't just look at the definition. When you talk about feminism, most people don't think of it in terms of definition. They think of the movement. You gotta look at the entire movement and where it stands today. Even secular non-Muslims have lost their respect to the movement. Are they all misogynists? No. They just don't agree with the movement. You don't have control over terms like that.

For example, there's this Iranian terrorist organization "Mujahideen-e-Khalq". By definition it sounds great. But it's not so great. "Taliban", by definition, is beautiful. But it's a terrorist organization. Same thing with "Islamic State". Which Muslim doesn't want a proper, peaceful Islamic State? But nobody likes "ISIS".

You're getting upset with terms.

On 5/23/2018 at 10:31 AM, Amira00 said:

So, surely, Islam is a feminist religion. If it isnt, then you're suggesting Islam teaches that the genders don't deserve equal rights in all sorts of things. It would suggest that Islam believes one gender is superior to another.

Ummm that's like saying "Alex is gay... He's happy.". Sure but most people think of "homosexuality" when they hear the word "gay". Again, you're getting all caught up with words and terms here.

On 5/23/2018 at 10:31 AM, Amira00 said:

People have radicalized Islam just like they have feminism. Terrorist groups like ISIS claim that Islam is founded upon the destruction of groups who don't agree with Islamic ideology. It preaches that islam allows the buying and selling of women for the pleasure of "the holy soldiers". Is that the belief of Islam? Of course not. Islam is a religion of peace etc. Does that mean we suddenly stop identifying as Muslim because terrorists like ISIS have radicalised our religion? No. We just live our lives as true Muslims and demonstrate to everyone else what true Islam is.

Most people in the world don't think of ISIS when they hear Islam. Sure a few potheads here and there will. But most people don't. Islam as a movement is still legit. Feminism as a movement is not.

On 5/23/2018 at 10:31 AM, Amira00 said:

To suddenly give radical feminists all the power by rejecting the original meaning of feminism and allowing the radical feminists to mould that definition to benefit them is so counterproductive and hypocritical.  Why should we give any radicals of any group any sort of acknowledgement? 

Because radical feminism has consumed the entire movement. Many former feminists themselves no longer like to associate themselves with the movement. Modern feminism sucks. That girl from Harry Potter... nope. Not buying into her ideology.

The biggest problem with feminism is that they don't have a system of Wilayah. That's where it contradicts with Islam. Islam has a notion of Wilayah. A man is a Wali of his wife. A father is a Wali of his children. An Imam is a Wali of the believers. Unfortunately, feminism doesn't have that concept. Men these days are so feminine that women won't accept them Walis anymore. 

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On 5/22/2018 at 2:07 PM, Tamy said:

Salam,

within the western society that I live in, feminism has become the new craze and it seems everyone is identifying as a feminist. I am a female myself and of course, believe we as women deserve the same place in the workplace as men as well as the rights to make our own decisions. However to what extent does that go with Islamic beliefs?

Of course, a Muslim woman has her rights named by religion but since feminism revolves around men and women being equal, doesn't that go against Islamic thought?

I'm honestly not sure whether I want to identify as a feminist or not.

Please let me know your opinions!

Islamically, men and women have different rights. Nowhere has Allah stated that one has superiority over the other.

Crude example:

Women can give birth.

Men can 'go' standing up (yes I know it is makrouh).

Allah has created us differently for different purposes so no need to compete.

Some feminists are complexed about being women because they try to compete with men in activities that are designed for men. 

 

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In reality, the entrance of the woman with equal rights into practical modern life, her new freedom, her finding herself side by side with men in the streets, offices, professions, factories, sports, and now even in political and military life, is one of those dissolutive phenomena in which, in most cases, it is difficult to perceive anything positive. In essence, all this is simply the renunciation of the woman's right to be a woman. The promiscuity of the sexes in modern existence can only "relieve" the woman to a greater or lesser degree of the energy with which she is endowed; she enters freer relationships only by regressing, because they are primitivized, prejudiced by all the factors and the practical, predominating interests of  modern life.

- Julius Evola, Ride the Tiger

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I honestly think people need to stop with these terms such as feminism. I believe the term should be Haq (as Abu Hadi said). 

All the rights, and responsibilities have already been stated in the Quran and we have it in our history, so what's the need to go to these external groups that mostly are extraordinarily misguided. 

Can we not all as muslims accept that Allah has set laws and defined the details for men and women. Allah has given women rights in the Quran. Why do i need to go outside and look elsewhere for extra ideas now? We are seeing the results of that in today's western society anyways. 

Is this an extreme inferiority complex of muslims across the globe? Are they extremely insecure and confused?. Why can't a muslim woman just say, no i', not a feminist; instead i am a muslim, and Allah has given me my rights; He has allowed me to work (but not the western feminist free loading partying drinking with men privately even in their homes type of work environment/ethic - but rather the Khadija type). He has allowed me to own my own property and land and to inherit, and the amount i inherit, is according to His wisdom. He has allowed me to live a peaceful life at home, to build my family, but He has also instructed that i be faithful and loyal to my husband, and that my Husband be the head of the family (Yes you read that right... why can't the muslims, and muslim woman just accept this and outright say it?). 

I think muslims need to stop bowing and be a bit more proud and confident in themselves, and also in Allah. I don't like the term Islam is a 'feminist' religion'. I like the term Islam is Haq... and it has given the natural, and best rights to all people. 

Edited by YAli
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On 5/28/2018 at 4:04 PM, Tamy said:

So I guess in the end, Islam is for equity between the two sexes rather than equality. Although in Islam a woman is guaranteed her rights as a wife etc, Islam itself still places more value, freedom, and responsibility towards the man which in itself isn't feminist. 

Feminism consists of many things, some of which are in the workplace and others based on an equality of treatment. When a man inherits more than a woman Islamically then that would be the antithesis of a large portion of feminist ideology. 

So I guess in conclusion, I can't fully identify as a feminist despite the fact that I support most of what feminism stands for. 

That depends on how you define equity and equality. Men and women are equal before Allah(s.w.a) in the ways that are most important, i.e. they both are creations of Allah(s.w.a) with free will and with rights and responsibilities and with the ability to defer their will to the will of Allah(s.w.a) in cases where their is a difference (Islam) and thus gain Paradise forever. That is the important stuff, IMHO. In this, there is no difference between them. 

There is a slight difference in their function within the society. The primary role of women, in an ideal situation, is as caregivers for children and as maintainers of calm and cordial relationships within the household and within the community. Women can also take on other roles as needed (have professions, be active in religious and charity organizations, etc) but their primary role is this because it is what they are good at (and something men are not as good at). This is how Allah(s.w.a) created them because these duties are essential for society to thrive and even to continue. The problem in the West is that this role of caregiver and homemaker (or 'domestic engineer' as some like to call it) has been so devalued that the 'modern women' looks down on this role and considers it beneath her and thus this role is not being fulfilled most of the time. This role not being fulfilled is having bad consequences for society (that is probably a subject for another thread). 

The inheritance is because the primary responsibility of a man is to support the family financially, in Islam. This role is clearly defined. Women are not responsible to do this. So because Allah(s.w.a) has given men this responsibility, he has given them a matching right (i.e. they get double the portion in inheritance). In Islam, rights and responsibilities are always paired. This is what we call Haqq(mentioned earlier in the thread). 

Edited by Abu Hadi
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6 hours ago, YAli said:

I don't like the term Islam is a 'feminist' religion'. I like the term Islam is Haq... and it has given the natural, and best rights to all people. 

Salam ,shia islam is the most feminist religion beside male Imams (as) we have Lady Fatima (sa) Lady Khadijah (sa) ,Lady Zainadine (sa) ,Umm Farwah  , Lady Sabika & Hamidah , Lady Narjes(sa) , Lady Fatima Masoume which Qom Hawza exists because of her as role models & Hadith narrators also a large portion of 313 real supporters of Imam Mahdi (aj) will be from women .

The Mahdi : position of Women 

https://youtu.be/Jp_X-X5NS3s

 

Edited by Ashvazdanghe
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8 hours ago, Abu Hadi said:

That depends on how you define equity and equality. Men and women are equal before Allah(s.w.a) in the ways that are most important, i.e. they both are creations of Allah(s.w.a) with free will and with rights and responsibilities and with the ability to defer their will to the will of Allah(s.w.a) in cases where their is a difference (Islam) and thus gain Paradise forever. That is the important stuff, IMHO. In this, there is no difference between them. 

There is a slight difference in their function within the society. The primary role of women, in an ideal situation, is as caregivers for children and as maintainers of calm and cordial relationships within the household and within the community. Women can also take on other roles as needed (have professions, be active in religious and charity organizations, etc) but their primary role is this because it is what they are good at (and something men are not as good at). This is how Allah(s.w.a) created them because these duties are essential for society to thrive and even to continue. The problem in the West is that this role of caregiver and homemaker (or 'domestic engineer' as some like to call it) has been so devalued that the 'modern women' looks down on this role and considers it beneath her and thus this role is not being fulfilled most of the time. This role not being fulfilled is having bad consequences for society (that is probably a subject for another thread). 

The inheritance is because the primary responsibility of a man is to support the family financially, in Islam. This role is clearly defined. Women are not responsible to do this. So because Allah(s.w.a) has given men this responsibility, he has given them a matching right (i.e. they get double the portion in inheritance). In Islam, rights and responsibilities are always paired. This is what we call Haqq(mentioned earlier in the thread). 

Loved reading your response and agree with what you've said. One question though; if someone asked you whether or not you were a feminist, what would you answer back or identify as?

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