Filling in the Blanks

17

We all face struggles and challenges in life, moments when we have to decide – will we do the right thing? Or will we give in and take the “easy way out”? And what then? In this guest submission, brother Yamin Faraj offers valuable words of wisdom and advice, on hijab and haya, and Islam and life.

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First of all, I just want you to know, whoever started this website is such a great person and has such a great heart to want to spread the true mannerism and etiquette a true Muslimah should have.

Haya is truly one of the biggest things I as an Arab American Muslim male value immensely. Haya in a woman really sets her apart from others. It isn’t just wearing a hijab – it’s making the hijab an extension of herself. By wearing hijab, you have made a commitment to yourself and to God, and that commitment should reflect on your actions.

Some females (and of course males) may not understand this, because sex and glamor and materialism are thrown in our faces from western society ideals through every media outlet. Because of this, so many females subconsciously, and in some cases consciously, want to take part in this rat race to be the thinnest, most glamorous, most beautiful, most desired!

Some of us fail to look past the haze of materialistic western ideals, and see the true meaning of this life.

In reference to haya: Is it really worth it to do that stupid little thing you want to do, even though deep down inside you know you’re doing wrong, but you convince yourself otherwise just so you can coerce your subconscious to swallow it…? “Oh, it’s just lip gloss/eyeliner/sparkly lotion/mascara”… Or … “Oh, they’re just jeans, I’m still covered up technically…” Be honest with yourself – would you really want to be noticed by, or drawn to someone, who is only conversing with you because of your guised appearance?

The hijab is supposed to be for the preservation of beauty, for allowing a woman’s natural appearance (no makeup) and personality show through. How are the men of this Ummah supposed to lower their gaze when some of the women are walking in the masajid doused with perfume, with their clicking heels and made up faces?  No one said it’s wrong, but that type of attention and modification of appearance should be kept behind closed doors and ultimately in matrimony, of course.

I was talking to a US soldier who was positioned in Iraq recently. I was doing business with him, and I later mentioned I was Muslim. He asked if my mom and sister wear “the scarf” and I said, yes, they do. He turned to me and said, “That’s so awesome man, I really like that. I’ve gotten into so many fights in the mall from guys ogling at my wife disrespectfully.”  Subhan’Allah, how even non-Muslims can see the true meaning of Hijab and be impressed by it!!

I have heard some use the excuse, ” Oh, I don’t do it for anyone else, I do it for myself!” Well then you need to stop doing things for yourself and do things for the sake of Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala, because it attracts the wrong kind of attention that could get you treading on thin ice in the blink of an eye. That’s jihad al-nafs, and you need to fight and struggle with your nafs to do the right thing to please Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala over your own personal pleasures.

I have the utmost respect for every Muslim female who covers – I know that in itself is a huge commitment and can be a huge struggle, especially in western society.

The truth of the matter is, males and females alike are willing to compromise their religion and the values that Prophet Mohammed peace be upon him wanted to instill in our Ummah. And for what? A mere, temporary, self-indulgent moment you will probably regret later on in life? And hopefully, the regret will be in this life, and not in the Hereafter whilst standing before your Creator…

Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala gave us all free will to do whatever we please in this dunya. However, He also sent the Prophet peace be upon him, who taught us how to act and what kinds of decisions to make based on certain mannerisms and etiquettes we as Muslims are supposed to uphold.

Nonetheless, this dunya is more or less a huge “fill in the blank” essay, and Allah subhanhu wa ta’ala already gave us the answers. It’s up to us to decide.