Human Rights And Status Of Women in Islam CSS

The article discusses “Human rights and status of women in Islam. The status of women in an Islamic society. Human rights and status of women in Islam. Islam and woman. The status of woman in an Islamic world. Human rights and status of women in Islam. Human rights and status of women in Islam.

Human Rights And Status Of Women in Islam

Human beings since the inception of their life on the surface of the earth bear some rights towards each other. Though they were discussed and highlighted by scholars from time to time but were universally accepted in December 1948, through Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UNDHR). Article 1 of the UNDHR states, “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.”

Whereas the developed nations of the West accepted these rights in 1948, Islam had granted them to human beings 1400 years ago. Some of the basic human rights that Islam has given include;

  1. Right of life protection“Whoso killed a soul not for retaliation for a soul slain, nor for corruption done in the land, shall be as if he had slain mankind altogether; and whoso gave life to it, shall be as if he had given life to mankind altogether.” – Al Maida
  2. Right to justice“And therein We prescribed for them, A life for a life and an eye for an eye, and an ear for an ear, and a tooth for a tooth, and for other injuries equitable retaliation.” – Al Maida
  3. EqualityO mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Aware.” – Al Hujurat
  4. Freedom from undue influence and coercion“And help one another in righteousness and piety and abet not one another in sin and transgression.” – Al Maida
  5. Participation in public affairs“And whose affairs are (decided) by mutual consultation.” – Al Shura
  6. Freedom in every aspect of life
  7. Freedom of expression“O ye who believe, be strict in observing justice and be witness for Allah, even though it be against yourselves or against parents and kindred.” – Al Nisa
  8. Protection of Reputation – “O ye who believe! Avoid most of suspicious, for suspicion is some cases is a sin. And spy not, nor back-bite one another.” – Al Ahzab
  9. Privacy“O ye who believe! Enter not houses other than your own, untill you have asked leave and saluted the inmates thereof.” – Al Noor
  10. Distribution of wealth“And their wealth there is share of one who asked for help and for one who is deprived.” – Sur Tul Dhaariyaal
  11. Rights of oppressed“And they feed, for love of Him, the poor, the orphan, and the prisoner.” Sura ud Dahr
  12. Propriety Rights
  13. Remuneration for labour“And for all are degrees according to what they did; and tha Allahmay fully repaythem for their deeds; and they shall not be wronged.” Sura Al Ahqaaf
  14. Compensatory rights“And every soul will be fully compensated for what it did. And He knows full well what they do.” Sura Az Zumar
  15. Right to protest“Allah likes not the utterances of harsh speech save by one who has been wronged, Allah is ever Hearer, Knower.” An Nisa
  16. Right to choose either cooperate or not“Cooperate with one another for virtue and needfulness and do not cooperate with one another for the purpose of vice and aggression.” Al Quran
  17. Protection of religious sentiments – “Do not abuse those they appeal to instead of God.” Al Quran
  18. Right of association“And there may spring from you a community who invite to goodness and enjoin right conduct and forbid indecency.”  Aal-e-Imran
  19. Right to religious freedom“There is no compulsion in religion.” Al Baqara
  20. Right to safety of life“And whoever saves a life it is as though he had saved lives of all mankind.” Al Quran
  21. Respect for the chastity of women“Do not approach (the bound) of adultery.”
  22. Right to basic standard of life“And in their wealth there is acknowledged right for the needy and destitute.”  Al Quran
  23. Rights of enemies at war
  24. Rights of non combatants
  25. Rights of combatants

Dignity Of Men And Women in Islam

The biggest dilemma of today’s world is those nations who never treated woman like a human being in past now called themselves custodian of women rights while the harsh reality is that women in their societies even present day faces many challenges. In Western society home is considered relatively more dangerous for women than outside. Women are mostly got raped by their close family members like father, brother and cousin etc.

Islam on the contrary has not only provided complete protection to women but also has raised their status and rights in the society. Some of the unique characteristics of woman status in Islam are given below.

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By the time Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was preaching Islam in Arab world, women were deprived of all rights, respect and dignity. They were not only considered inferior to men but also a sheer mean for satisfaction and joy for men. This was not only the case of Arab world. In other parts of the world somewhat similar views were also common. However the most immoral tradition common in Arab world in this regard was the burial of baby girls alive after birth. Islam on one hand annihilated all such views and tradition and on the other hand restored the dignity and respect of women in society. The Holy Quran says

And Allah has made for you spouses of your own kind, and given you through your spouses children and grandchildren. And He has granted you good, lawful provisions. Are they then faithful to falsehood and ungrateful for Allah’s favours?” – Al Nahl

Regarding burial of baby girls alive Islam clearly stated

“Do not kill your children for fear of poverty. We provide for them and for you. Surely killing them is a heinous sin.” Al Isra

The immediate effect of these teachings was that in the era of Second pious Caliph Umar, Al Shifa’ bint Abdullah was the market supervisor and controller of Medina.

In the contract of marriage woman is a primary party but her rights were completely wiped out in pre Islamic Arab world. Islam not only made her primary party and her consent mandatory for the contract but also called Mehr (dowry) solely the right of wife. In pre Islamic Arabia, Mehr was paid to parents. The Holy Quran says

“And give women (upon marriage) their (bridal) gifts graciously. But if they give up willingly to you anything of it, then take it in satisfaction and ease.” An Nisa

Similarly regarding good behaviour maintaining with wives the Holy Prophet (PBUH) said

  “The best of you are those who are the best to their wives, and I am the best, amongst you, to my wives” (al-Tirmidhi, 3895; Ibn Maajah, 1977).

Islam also raised the status of women as a mother and daughter in society. Highlighting the status of mother the Holy Quran says

“We have commanded people to honour their parents. Their mothers bore them in hardship and delivered them in hardship.” Al Ahqaf

Similarly the Holy Prophet (PBUH) said

“Your Heaven lies under the feet of your mother.” (Ahmad, Nasai).

Islam not only condemned the burial of girl child strongly but also warned people of the consequences of their heinous crime in these terms

“And when the girl-child, who was buried alive, is asked. Upon what sin was she killed for.” – At Takwir

Whereas people before the advent of Islam used to burry baby girls alive, Islam called their birth a blessing from Allah Almighty. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) said

“When a boy is born, then he brings one Noor (light) and when a girl is born, then she brings two Noors.”

Similarly the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) also said

Whoever brings up two girls till they reach the age of puberty, he and I will come on the Day of Resurrection like this,” (and he joined his blessed fingers.)

And

“If parents are kind and generous towards their daughters, then they will be so close to Him (The Holy Prophet Peace and Blessings of Allah be Upon Him) in Jannah, like one finger is to the next.”

Whereas in many other parts of the world including Arab, women’s reading and writing was considered unethical and against culture, tradition and religion, Islam stressed on it in strong words. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) said

“Seeking knowledge is an obligation upon every Muslim.” Sunan Ibn Majah 224

Islam believed in the equity of women. It has always raised voice for the women rights even in the time when the whole world considered them inferior and treated like third class citizens. Islam however has endorsed women rights with some limitations because this is in the best interest of humanity.


References

For further readings you may consult the following sources.

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