Hijab and the Issues Faced by Hijab Observing Women
It is not very unusual to come across young Muslim women, struggling to follow their religion, who are labeled as conservative or having a backward thinking approach. Hardest of all is the lady’s struggle to observe hijab since it has to do with her appearance in public. It might be difficult to argue with a family who does not support her decision to observe hijab.
First question raised by those arguing against hijab is whether it is obligatory for women to cover themselves. Before we start discussing, let us see what Qur’an says:
"And tell the believing women to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts and not expose their adornment except that which [necessarily] appears thereof and to wrap [a portion of] their head covers over their chests and not expose their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands' fathers, their sons, their husbands' sons, their brothers, their brothers' sons, their sisters' sons, their women, that which their right hands possess, or those male attendants having no physical desire, or children who are not yet aware of the private aspects of women. And let them not stamp their feet to make known what they conceal of their adornment. And turn to Allah in repentance, all of you, O believers, that you might succeed.” (Qur’an 24:31)
Khimar was the head covering worn by women of Arab during the time of Prophet (P.B.U.H). This garment was popular and traditionally worn by all the women. Many women would keep the ends of the khimar behind their backs, leaving their necks, breasts and ears open. In this verse, women are asked to bring the ends of khimar to the front and cover themselves. This verse is a complete order which tells women about which parts to cover and from whom.
Now that it is clear that hijab is required of all the believing women, the discussion moves to the cultural pressures and the image one has in the society. They are concerned that the girl will not get equal status, or a job as good as other girls who do not observe hijab. Qur’an says it is Allah who can raise your status or lower it.
“You exalt whom You please, and abase whom You please. In Your Hand is all good. Surely You are All-Powerful.” (Qur’an 3:26)
Another issue raised by families is that the girl might not get good suitors and might never be able to marry a good or respectable man. Allah’s words in Qur’an are:
“Women impure are for men impure, and men impure for women impure, and women of purity are for men of purity, and men of purity are for women of purity: these are not affected by what people say: for them there is forgiveness, and a provision honorable.” (Qur’an 24:26)
This verse is the ultimate solace. A girl who is close to her Lord is not likely to be happy with a man who is not religious or is involved in immoral activities. It is, therefore, a good news. Observing hijab brings one closer to Allah and Allah will reward you with a morally strong spouse, Inshaa Allah.
The foremost thing is faith. If you have firm belief in every word of Allah and know with all your heart that He is Al-Qadir, you must be sure that He will make ways for you and will reward you highly. Initially, there might be some difficulties in the path of righteousness, but eventually things will get smooth and you will not regret your decision to stand up for your faith and belief.