Hijab is the new symbol of woman’s liberation

October 30, 2008 at 12:33 pm 10 comments

 

An American woman who was born in the midst of America’s “Heartland.” grew up, just like any other girl, being fixated with the glamour of life in “the big city.” Eventually, moved to Florida and on to South Beach of Miami, a hotspot for those seeking the “glamorous life.”

Naturally, she did what most average Western girls do. Focusing on appearance and appeal, basing her self-worth on how much attention she get from others. She worked out religiously and became a personal trainer, acquired an upscale waterfront residence, became a regular “exhibiting” beach-goer and was able to attain a “living-in-style” kind of life.

Years went by, only to realize that her scale of self-fulfillment and happiness slid down the more she progressed in “feminine appeal.” She was a slave to fashion and a hostage to her own looks.

As the gap continued to progressively widen between herself-fulfillment and lifestyle, She sought refuge in escapes from alcohol and parties to meditation, activism, and alternative religions, only to have the little gap widen to what seemed like a valley. She eventually realized it all was merely a pain killer rather than an effective remedy.

By now it was Sept. 11, 2001. As she witnessed the ensuing barrage on Islam, Islamic values and culture, and the infamous declaration of the “new crusade,” She started to notice something called Islam. Up until that point, all she had associated with Islam was women covered in “tents,” wife beaters, harems, and a world of terrorism. As a feminist libertarian, and an activist, she was pursuing a better world for all.

One day she came across a book that is negatively stereotyped in the West – The Noble Qur’an. She said ” I was first attracted by the style and approach of the Qur’an, and then intrigued by its outlook on existence, life, creation, and the relationship between Creator and creation. I found the Qur’an to be a very insightful address to heart and soul without the need for an interpreter or pastor “.

Eventually she hit a moment of truth: new-found self-fulfilling activism was nothing more than merely embracing a faith called Islam where she could live in peace as a “functional” Muslim.

She bought a beautiful long gown and head cover resembling the Muslim woman’s dress code and walked down the same streets and neighborhoods where only days earlier she had walked in shorts, bikini, or “elegant” Western business attire.

Although the people, the faces, and the shops were all the same, one thing was remarkably distinct – She was not – nor was the peace at being a woman she experienced for the very first time. She felt as if the chains had been broken and she was finally free and was delighted with the new looks of wonder on people’s faces in place of the looks of a hunter watching his prey which she had once sought. She felt like suddenly a weight had been lifted off her shoulders then said: Finally, “I was free”.

She also said “Of all places, I found my Islam at the heart of what some call “the most scandalous place on earth,” which makes it all the more dear and special”..SubhanaAllah.

While content with Hijab she became curious about Niqab, seeing an increasing number of Muslim women in it. She asked her Muslim husband, whom she married after reverted to Islam, whether she should wear Niqab or just settle for the Hijab which she was already wearing. Her husband simply advised her that he believes Hijab is mandatory in Islam while Niqab is not. At the time, her Hijab consisted of head scarf that covered all hair except for face, and a loose long black gown called “Abaya” that covered all over the body from neck to toe.

A year-and-a-half passed, she told her husband I wanted to wear Niqab. The reason, this time, was that she felt it would be more pleasing to Allah, the Creator, increasing the feeling of peace at being more modest.

Her husband supported her decision and took her to buy an “Isdaal,” a loose black gown that covers from head to toe, and Niqab, which covers all over the head and face except eyes. Soon enough, news started breaking about politicians, Vatican clergymen, libertarians, and so-called human rights and freedom activists condemning Hijab at times, and Niqab at others as being oppressive to women, an obstacle to social integration, and more recently, as an Egyptian official called it – “a sign of backwardness. ”

She find it to be a blatant hypocrisy when Western governments and so-called human rights groups rush to defend woman’s rights when some governments impose a certain dress code on women, yet such “freedom fighters” look the other way when women are being deprived of their rights, work, and education just because they choose to exercise their right to wear Niqab or Hijab.

She says “Today I am still a feminist, but a Muslim feminist, who calls on Muslim women to assume their responsibilities in providing all the support they can for their husbands to be good Muslims. To raise their children as upright Muslims so they may be beacons of light for all humanity once again. To enjoin good – any good – and to forbid evil – any evil. To speak righteousness and to speak up against all ills. To fight for our right to wear Niqab or Hijab and to please our Creator whichever way we chose. But just as importantly to carry our experience with Niqab or Hijab to fellow women who may never have had such a chance.”..SubhanAllah!. “Most of the women I know wearing Niqab are Western reverts, some of whom are not even married. Others wear Niqab without full support of either family or surroundings. What we all have in common is that it is the personal choice of each and every one of us, which none of us is willing to surrender.”

Willingly or unwillingly, women are bombarded with styles of “dressing-in- little-to- nothing” virtually in every means of communication everywhere in the world.

As an ex non-Muslim, I insist on women’s right to equally know about Hijab, its virtues, and the peace and happiness it brings to a woman’s life as it did to mine. Yesterday, the bikini was the symbol of my liberty, when in actuality it only liberated me from my spirituality and true value as a respectable human being.”

She is none other than Sara Bokker is a former actress, model, fitness instructor, and activist. Currently, Sara is director of communications at The March for Justice, a cofounder of The Global Sisters Network, and producer of the infamous Shock & Awe Gallery©.

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10 Comments Add your own

  • 1. nadia  |  October 30, 2008 at 12:39 pm

    MashAllah, she’s truly inspiring.

    ~Yes, Jaan 🙂

    Reply
  • 2. Wakas Mir  |  October 30, 2008 at 1:54 pm

    Amazing.. thx a lot for sharing this 🙂

    ~ Jazakallah khairum

    Reply
  • 3. misspecs  |  October 30, 2008 at 2:27 pm

    She’s inspiring.

    It always seems pretty strange to me when men write on these topics. In a way, you guys have no idea how much is behind the sentence “delighted with the new looks of wonder on people’s faces in place of the looks of a hunter watching his prey which she had once sought”.
    Just saying.

    Thanks for sharing, though.

    ~ I guess no one will have an idea about that sentence except the one who had gone through the real situation, others can only simulate the scenario and feeling.
    I believe whoever shares or write any topic should have a positive impact on the reader rather having the gender difference, because the ultimate idea should benefit for the society and religion and we shouldn’t differentiate it.

    Thanks for your effortful comment 🙂

    Reply
  • 4. A  |  October 31, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    Thanks. Very interesting post! Keep up the great blog work.

    A

    ~Thanks for stopping by, A 🙂

    Reply
  • 5. Sabiha  |  November 2, 2008 at 9:29 pm

    Jazak Allah Khair for this post. I have just started to wear hijab and stories like this only reinforce to me how right it is to wear it.

    ~MashaAllah, Sis great to hear that you are wearing Hijab. May Allah subhanawata’ala reward you..Aameen

    Reply
  • 6. Amina  |  November 4, 2008 at 2:10 am

    Have you seen Farzad Wafapoor clip on hijab?
    Check it out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3mhqgrYgNJ4

    regards
    Amina

    ~ Thanks for sharing, it’s really awesome and answer to very often questions.

    Reply
  • 7. Stefania  |  September 18, 2009 at 2:08 am

    Some special ones for children exist too:

    ~ Sorry to say it’s a kind of Joke on Hijab.

    Reply
  • 8. Kamila  |  November 8, 2009 at 4:53 am

    I found this site using google.com And i want to thank you for your work. You have done really very good site. Great work, great site! Thank you!

    Sorry for offtopic

    Reply
  • 9. Sakib  |  October 27, 2011 at 12:40 am

    Hello there, I found your blog through google. Great piece but there is one mistake.. the hijab isn’t “new”…. it’s about 1500 years old!!
    Thanks.

    Reply
    • 10. masood  |  November 8, 2011 at 10:57 pm

      Thanks for the compliments. I actually mean the new liberation 🙂

      Reply

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