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Women's dress code as in the Noble Quran


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Zeynab
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« on: November 30, 2009, 12:37:05 am »

 BismEm


 salamem to all sisters and brothers ..


The Noble Quran defines the dress code for both men and women.  But as it ought to be, dress code for women is more detailed because a woman's body is made as such that it attracts greater attention with improper intent.  This factor can neither be denied nor overlooked.
 
Therefore both men and women are either directly commanded by Allah  or commanded by Allah through the Prophet Muhammad (SAAW) in the Quran to adhere to modesty by not gazing or staring at people around them and by covering up their bodies with decency.  In my personal opinion, I would interpret 'modesty' for men as not showing the body above their thighs, and concealing their lower chest and backs.  For women I would interpret it as adhering to modesty similarly as mentioned for men, plus, not exposing their bare arms, covering the entire chest below the neck (some may consider it necessary to conceal the neck as well), covering the entire back, thighs and legs upto the center of the calves or some may consider it necessary to cover legs in full. 
 
Women must either wear the loose outer garment over their regular clothes (jilbab), or as in Western countries many Muslim women wear pants, skirts, blouses, shirts or tops without the jilbab .. they must make sure that these garments are loose so that they don't reveal the contours of the body, and of course, the garments must not be made of even the slightest see-through materials.
 
Individuals can have minor differences regarding the above interpretations, but in general regarding all vital issues of modesty, the above dress code and etiquettes must be adhered to by believing men and women as per the commandments of Allah.
 
Also, women in particular should take care not to do things that might attract unnecessary attention to their person e.g. walking noisily by purposely stamping their feet or by wearing noisy shoes.  Sometimes such attention maybe be harmless.  But at times it can attract the attention of people harboring Haram intents.  The purpose of this commandment is to stay safe and not take any chances of making mistakes by getting involved with the wrong persons. 
 
Check the following verses for references.
 
"Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and be modest. That is purer for them. Lo! Allah is Aware {Al-Khabir} of what they do."  (24:30)
 
"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 over their bosoms, and not to reveal their adornment save to their own husbands or fathers ...... 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 you may succeed."  (24:31)
 
"O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them (when they go abroad). That will be better, that so they may be recognized and not annoyed. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful."  (33:59)

 
Finally, we come to the issue of the veil (head covering) or hijab and face covering or nikab for women.   This too can be discussed by taking into consideration the above verses.  Even many of those people who have read the Quran often say that the Quran does not mention anything about the hijab or nikab.  Many Muslims and non-Muslims claim that the Quran does not require women to wear veils.  But this claim is debatable if we read the above verses of the Noble Quran carefully.
 
Allah Almighty says  " ..... to draw their veils over their bosoms"

According to a common misunderstanding, the words in the above Verse that specify to draw  the veil over the bosom are mistaken as wrapping a shawl or a cape around the shoulders and chest.  But that's not a correct interpretation at all.  Please read the following paragraph carefully for the right clarification.

If we try to understand the dress code of women as existed hundreds of years ago and even now in many parts of the world, we will observe that the veil or hijab or khimar mean the same.  A piece of the veil (or khimar in Arabic) would be attached to the larger headcover, folded and placed over the head, and it could be unfolded and pulled down across the face and over the bosom whenever desired.  Thus, the veil or khimar would serve the purpose of a head cover (hijab), a face cover (nikab) and also a covering over the bosom.  For a better understanding of this issue, check the following picture from Wikipedia.


Attributions | Wikipedia 
"A veiled Arab woman in Bersheeba, Palestine."
Author:  Frank Hurley.
Date:  1946.
 
This is the closest illustration we can get of the kind of khimar worn in former times.  You can see the face covering attached with the headcover pulled down, coming over the face and bosom, though she's put it on her face so as to cover only a portion of her face.  That's because the face cover is attached to the headcover only at a single point .. as can be seen.  If it was attached to the headcover or khimar more firmly from one end to the other, it would cover the face and bosom fully when pulled down.  This covering can also be folded and placed back over the khimar or hijab or headcover .. whatever we choose to call it .. in order to remove it from the face and thus only keep the headcover covering the hair. 

By the way, it must be understood that veil (or hijab) has nothing to do with any strict seclusion of women as some non-Muslims misinterpret in connection with the hijab and nikab on the basis of certain incorrect practices by hardliners and cultures borrowed from ancient / orthodox Christian and Jewish ideologies of their clergy. 
 
As mentioned, many Muslim and non-Muslim analysts strongly deny that the Quran requires women to wear head coverings nor face coverings.  Not to mention, political factors are also a motive behind such squabblings.  Similarly, Muslim traditionalists strongly affirm that the Quran does require the same.  The truth is that yes the Quran does command women to cover their heads and bosom, and in certain circumstances also to cover their faces.  The verses above are clear evidences of this fact.  The social circumstances in Arabia and many parts of the world necessiated this dress code.  Even today in many parts of the world it's necessary.  But if those Muslims living in the West consider that simply wearing modest, loose and unrevealing clothing is enough to make them look and feel modest, that too is fine from the Quran's rational view point.  We must remember that this commandment of the Noble Quran on dress code of women is essential for specific circumstances, and can also be adjusted by staying within the required limits in certain societies as in today's West. 
 
As Musims it's important for us to keep in mind the ideology of modesty as aptly fits into the society we live in, but only to the point it comfortably complies with the Quranic values.  Also, it's just as vital as per the dictates of the Noble Quran to nurture a clean & modest intent and decent behaviour which compliment and support the ideology of the modest dress code, without which, modest clothing might not carry too many blessings for us in the Sight of Allah Almighty.

Thus the Noble Quran says:
 
"O Children of Adam! We have revealed unto you raiment to conceal your shame, and splendid vesture, but the raiment of restraint from evil, that is best. This is of the revelations of Allah, that they may remember."  (7:26)  Al-Araaf

Thus, Allah Almighty makes it very plain that though He has informed humankind the importance to conceal their shame and observe modesty by wearing the right kind of clothing, yet what's even more important without which modesty of outer garments won't serve any purpose, is to adhere to proper conduct and avoid the forbidden acts through restraint and self-control.
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« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2009, 06:50:26 pm »

MaashAllah, what a fantastic article!  written perfectly without any omissions.  I couldn't have said it better myself  Smiley  i must save it and send it around because I too have heard many Muslims say that hijab isn't mentioned in the Quran.
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« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2009, 06:54:33 pm »

Many thanks for your appreciation and correct understanding of this piece, sister Cat.  Please do absolutely send it around.  A lot of folks need to correct their perception on this issue.
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« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2009, 02:36:54 am »

Excellent read.  Thank u for explaining with the example of that pic of the woman in khimar at Beersheba, Palestine.  That's a very good clarification, removes all doubts and confirms what the quoted Quranic verses are referring to. 
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« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2009, 04:38:22 pm »

Brothers and Sisters,

The 3 ayah dealing with the clothing issue:

"O prophet, tell your wives, your daughters, and the wives of the believers that they shall LENGTHEN their garments. Thus, they will be recognized and avoid being insulted. God is Forgiver, Most Merciful." 33:59
Allah leaves it to YOU, and your culture, to decide HOW LONG.

[7:26] "O children of Adam, we have provided you with garments to cover your bodies, as well as for luxury. But the best garment is the garment of righteousness. These are some of GOD's signs, that they may take heed."
The garment of righteousness means DRESS MODESTLY. My profile picture taken immediately following a marathon, at age 16, was appropriate clothing for marathons, but not for masjid.

24:31(Literal) And say to the believers they (F) lower/humble from their eye sights, and they (F) protect/safe keep from their genital parts between their legs, and they do not show their decoration/beauty except what appeared/is visible from it, and they hold in place/sew (E) with their HEAD COVERS/covers on their collar OPENING IN CLOTHES/CHESTS ,....

24:31 YA Tell the believing women to lower their eyes, guard their private parts, and not display their charms except what is apparent outwardly, and cover their BOSOMS with their VEILS...

http://al-quran.info

Transliteration   Waqul lilmu/minati yaghdudna min absarihinna wayahfathna furoojahunna wala yubdeena zeenatahunna illa ma thahara minha walyadribna bikhumurihinna AAala juyoobihinna wala yubdeena zeenatahunna illa libuAAoolatihinna aw aba-ihinna aw aba-i buAAoolatihinna aw abna-ihinna aw abna-i buAAoolatihinna aw ikhwanihinna aw banee ikhwanihinna aw banee akhawatihinna aw nisa-ihinna aw ma malakat aymanuhunna awi alttabiAAeena ghayri olee al-irbati mina alrrijali awi alttifli allatheena lam yathharoo AAala AAawrati alnnisa-i wala yadribna bi-arjulihinna liyuAAlama ma yukhfeena min zeenatihinna watooboo ila Allahi jameeAAan ayyuha almu/minoona laAAallakum tuflihoona

The word in question is khumar and appears in the transliteration or romanized form as this "bikhumurihinna". In the many translations, please cite the exact point where Allah commands covering the hair? It says to use a cloth that is already there, for the desert climate, for the hair, the face, the shoulders, and cover the breasts. It does NOT say the hair must always be covered.

Thus it makes perfect sense that Allah would SUGGEST using this already convenient article of clothing to make sure the BREASTS are fully covered.

Supporters of the veil myth CAN NOT use this verse to justify forcing woman to veil their heads, hair and faces in the name of God because NOWHERE in this verse to we find such a commandment.

Please show me in the above verse where we find Allah say, "Tell the believing woman to cover their hair, heads and/or faces". How do you come to the conclusion that this verse commands woman to cover their heads when it doesn't?

Islam is easy as God has clearly stated. Shirk type additions to Islam through Imams, Mullahs and Hadith are NOT easy. ANY woman from ANYWHERE can use ANYTHING to cover her breasts. Probably that which is most convenient to the clothing of her culture. Since North Americans don't wear head covers women from this culture would simply use a T shirt or something like that.

In al-Kitab Allah clearly states the reading is clear and easy to understand, AND, Allah has a habit of repeating specific commandments, making them very clear. There exists no command to cover the hair/head, so unless you are in reality a follower of the hadeeth, you are not required to cover your hair.

IF you wear hijab for fashion, fine.
IF you wear hijab for culture, fine.
IF you wear hijab as Islam, you are following an Islam not of the Book, and you are then worshiping another god.

WHERE then does this false ruling derive? The hadeeth? Yes, but not originally. This derives from the Bible. The prostitutes all wore what is now the hijab, covering all but the eyes, and yes, I can cite references.

I try to follow only the Book as my guide, meaning, I try to throw out the garbage.

Salamun Alaikom
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« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2009, 02:08:21 am »


The word in question is khumar and appears in the transliteration or romanized form as this "bikhumurihinna".

"khimar" ..... that's precisely what I took up.  So, do you even know what khimar is and what it used to look like in 7the century Arabia, for that matter even now in certain segments of the Muslim world?  Obviously you don't have a darn clue.  And to continue your baseless argument, you have purposely not checked the link I provided to that effect of the woman in Beersheba, Palestine, which is the closest example we can find today of the type of khimar  women wore in 7th century Arabia.  Read that portion with this link above in my post.   It's so easy to understand.  That portion of  Verse 24:31 which says " ..... to draw their veils over their bosoms" ... what do you think it means?  Does it simply mean to throw a piece of material over the chest or breasts as you've ignorantly suggested?  That's because you have no idea what a real woman's khimar is or used to be.  Check that image and my comments above in my original post again and it clearly explains that a woman's khimar is tailored as such that when the veil is drawn over the bosom, it automatically covers the face and chest.  And the head is already covered because the veil is attached with the head cover, otherwise the veil cannot possibly exist by hanging in thin air.  The very term "veil" means something that covers the head & face.  As a person who speaks English, you ought to know at least that much.  Veil is NOT like a cape that can be fastened around the neck and left hanging only over the shoulders and chest as shown in many orthodox Catholic culture.  That's apparently what you thought.  What else can one expect from your level of ignorance and blind combative spirit?
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« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2009, 02:18:54 am »

Exactly, this is precisely what a veil is.  But it's gonna be too tough for poor Andy to understand. 
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« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2012, 12:50:00 am »

InshAllah, I'll be going to our Islamic community center discussion next week.  Topic - hejab/niqab.  To get some tips I did a quick search at MV and wow!  this is great.  Got plenty of tips directly from the Quran.  Many thanks for the help Sister Zaynab.  Allah bless you and reward you for your hard work.  Excellent article.

Free Minder, Jon Andy Mac, is as usual grossly misinterpreting matters as per his own selfish whims in an attempt to spread fitnah which they always do.  No surprise.  A man who claims drinking alcohol is allowed in the Quran, how will he be honest enough to understand anything at all?
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« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2012, 12:59:07 am »

Oh, brother PT, I thought you had read it.  Zainab put it up more than 2 years ago .. here, at Zainab's Lounge and Facebook.  Everyone loved it.  Insh'Allah, it will help you a lot at the discussion.
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« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2012, 01:01:41 am »

Yeah, as I see it's been posted quite sometime ago.  Don't know how I missed it.  It sure is very helpful.  I've printed it and highlighted many portions. 
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