Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Hijabi Beginner: 5 Pros Of Hijab

As part of my 'Hijabi Beginner' posts, I decided to make a list of five of what I think are the main reasons a Muslimah should wear the hijab. When you are thinking about wearing it, so many things go around in your head so I hope the list makes it that bit easier to decide.

Before reading it, remember that the word 'hijab' in Arabic means 'barrier' not 'headscarf' or 'modest dress'. A barrier is something built not something that pops up automatically when you cover your hair with some material. So before you even think about covering your hair, make sure the foundations for a proper hijab are already in place in your life by the way you act, talk and dress especially around men.

1. Simply and most importantly because has Allah (SWT) ordered us to wear the hijab and to cover up. If you believe in Allah (SWT), you pray and do good deeds and wish to obey Him (SWT) then sooner or later you will feel the urge to wear hijab. If you don’t feel like this at all, you should focus on other, more fundamental parts of Islam like reading the Quran, prayer and even things like questioning the sort of effect the people you socialise with have on you and the way you act.

“And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and be modest, and to display of their adornment only that which is apparent, and to draw their veils (head coverings) over their bosoms, and not to reveal their adornment accept to their own husbands or fathers or husbands' fathers, or their sons or their husbands' sons, or their brothers or their brothers' sons or sisters' sons, or women, or their slaves, or male attendants who lack vigour, or children who know naught of women's nakedness. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And turn unto Allah together, O believers, in order that ye may succeed.”
[Al Nur: 30]

Note what is mentioned first in the Iya: the lowering of the gaze and acting modestly or the covering of the breasts?

2. Dressing modestly in a world where women (and men!) are sexualized a lot will get you more respect from people who may have otherwise just ‘checked you out’ treating you, consciously or subconsciously, as a commodity.
3. Although a daunting thought and often a deterrent for a women wishing to wear hijab in the Western world, people will automatically know that you are a Muslim. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing though! If you are a walking representation of your religion then show it in a good light by the way you act and deal with people; if you change just one person’s bad opinion of Islam the jobs a good’n!

4. Only the people you want to see your Awrah will see it, when your outfit leaves only little to the imagination get back to the drawing board, love. On a slightly more serious note, if your outfits really do lend an eyeful and you want to dress more Islamically, start by de-cluttering your wardrobe of the most revealing items you have and then focus on covering your breasts, waist, hips and then move onto longer sleeves and covering the thighs. You’ll be several steps closer to hijab :)

5. People judge you by your intellect, opinions and achievements instead of your quickly perishable looks and you’re conforming by attempting to replicate unreasonable beauty stereotypes seen in the media.

I could go on and on but remember, the most important reason is because we are told to do so by our Creator who knows us better than we know ourselves and so knows what is good for us and what isn’t (SWT). I’m not saying that the next time you go out you must be covered from head to toe, that’s ridiculous. Islam came to humans in small chunks at a time so they could take it in and adapt their lives easily and over a long period. This is what a Muslimah wanting to be a Hijabi should do, adapt her lifestyle and clothing to be suited to Islam and Hijab only then should she cover her hair. Hope this helps any budding hijabis! More coming soon Isha'Allah :D