On this day, as the Hijab International Day, we choose to talk about this phrase, Hijab, and how the public choose to view it as. Is it really being used as it should be? We believe not.
Thanks to the media, the public sees only what they are allowed to see. and Allah says, in Surat Al ‘Araf (7: 189) that we are heedless despite the faculties that we are blessed with. We complain often and would rather be ungrateful than choose to see how much we have compared to those who are blessed with much less.
The hijab 🧕 and cultural, status relation
This topic is a very controversial one nowadays. Nonetheless, I understand what it entails and I choose to share this with you all, my Dear Readers. Contrary to popular belief, this topic is more than the clothing itself.
Growing up in the rural areas in a far-off village with mostly Christians surrounding us, I saw a whole lot of Christian women dressing modestly, head to toe. Mostly it’s a formal skirt below the knees and a well-sewn blouse covering elbows, holding a handkerchief and a purse as they go to church. But I always saw something else, a headscarf— a large one indeed. These women would have a ‘kanga’ which is a traditional Swahili garment, size of a babies blanket but lighter in weight and embedded with flowers and Swahili quotes printed on them. They would wear that on top and bottom too! And it wouldn’t be a label of religion, just modesty or cleanliness or weather. It was an outfit.
Then comes the rich ladies of the big cities in my country. Oh, my! The head turban, the traditional handmade skirts, and shirts, hiding all exposed skin except for the neck, a little of the legs and arms. How iconic of these high-class women with their large turbans properly put on to feel like a delicate flower on the head. It’s amazing!
Then dear readers, I sit here confused why the headscarf Muslims wear to uphold the rules in their religion hold so much controversy, fear and sadly, becomes a choice.
I know most Non-Muslims tag the scarf as hijab but hijab is more than this. It is concerned with one’s manners, one’s gaze and loose clothes covering the body. Nothing off the charts that can attract the other gender and this applies to both sexes. So can we please start addressing the scarf as a scarf. Then and only then can we go on to debate about it.
Be informed, Educate yourself! Do not let yourself be fooled by the “definitions” adopted by the media that chooses to twist meanings and are usually downright biased for their own agendas.
THE HIJAB 🧕
I once read a quote, it said;
‘‘Always know that you cannot really own your faith – or the lack of it – unless it’s something you CHOOSE to believe, not something you were raised to believe”
What you are raised to believe in is a tradition and not faith. This is why a lot of us call ourselves Muslims or Christians or Hindus etc. , when all we are doing is just following traditions.
We have not taken it upon ourselves to analyze, read, understand and find what we believe in. What we have faith in is what we choose to believe in. It has to be our struggles and our beliefs that shape our Imaan.
Today, the headscarf for women has become a tradition to us Muslims, and we call it Hijab. But the Hijab is a vast topic with ‘the headscarf’ being a part of it. I am not sure why, out of all the segments that a hijab consists of, we chose to put so much emphasis on the headscarf. Is it the way we wear it?
Because I don’t see what is the difference between a Nigerian Gele and a Muslim woman’s head scarf. Is it because our reason for wearing it, is our belief in our religion? But our Hijab as Muslims does not only limit us to our headscarves and does not apply to women only.
The general meaning of Hijab is modesty. Coverage. Hiding.
We cannot narrow it down and belittle Hijab to one entity. As much as the headscarf is important so is coverage of one’s body. Hiding the physical aspects that makes one attract the wrong kind of attention.
When you wear a Hijab, you are thinking about yourself and everyone of your fellow human beings out there. We are all a community and it’s not always just about ourselves. We were created similar and yet are different in many ways. Physical attraction is real, if you tell someone today why they wear the headscarf or why they cover themselves, I think it’s only fair to tell them first, why shouldn’t they?