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Let my heart be my veil

October 14, 2006
by

Oh Allah, Al-Hakam, I have sought your guidance from the undying light, the beautiful Quran in that which I have been uncertain.  I have read your words and I have found no resolve for this veil only for modesty.

I could choose to let this veil be my identity.  However, our Muslim brothers and sisters have turned our Islam into a religion of inequality, suppression and injustice, so I can not for any other reason than to please you Allah wear this veil.  They have taken the rights you have given me and told me that this is not what you meant.  They taken from me basic human needs and told me that this is not what Allah has intended for me.

Oh, Allah, if they could they would steal the heaven that you have layed beneath my feet.

My dear Allah, Al-Wadud, I will wear a veil whose strands are woven of the tears that flow for the injustices my Muslim brothers and sisters commit upon your Muslim women.  Each strand a tear from my eye, a piece of my heart. 

Let my heart be my veil….

10 Comments leave one →
  1. October 15, 2006 2:53 pm

    There is now an interesting debate going on over at Raincoaster’s blog. Check it out by clicking on the link in the first comment.

  2. October 16, 2006 2:21 pm

    Thank you for sharing. I have had difficulties in understanding some aspects of Muslim society, and have written about it in the hope of finding answers. In this simply amazing post you have helped me understand so much.

  3. Shaharazed permalink
    October 17, 2006 1:18 am

    Salaams Samaha,

    I believe that wearing the hijab, or veil as some people call it, (though veil is also used to describe the face veil) has to be a matter of conviction if done. Wearing it or not does not make you a Muslim or not a Muslim.

    Here’s my experience: When I was a new Muslim, I had a friend who was helping me to understand the religion. She was not a hijab wearing Muslim at the time. We were both living in the dormitory at the university. She had been a Muslim for at least 4 years. She shared with me her approach to the Qur’an. She said: Before reading the Qur’an, ask Allah to give you guidance from His Words, and then to open the Qur’an at random; whatever I found would be Allah’s way of guiding me. She said it always worked for her.

    That’s exactly what I did. I had no preconceived ideas about anything before opening it, and at the time I didn’t know for sure whether Muslim women had to cover or not. At the time I became Muslim, it was not stressed as much as it seems to be now.

    Anyways, not once,twice or three times, but on countless occasions, I would open the Qur’an at random, and the verse 24:31 would be the first verse on the page that I read. Whenever I opened the verse was there, so one day I asked my friend if we were supposed to be covering our hair, because I kept opening up to this verse in the Qur’an. She finally admitted that she used to cover her hair, but had stopped. She felt it was the right thing to do, but just wasn’t strong enough to do it. The time I became Muslim, many Muslims were not practicing as much as they are today. Subsequently, both her and I started covering our hair.

    I truly did feel as if God was telling me to cover myself, so I wanted to obey Him out of my deep love for Him and how he had always guided me in my life. It has to be for Allah, not for any person in your life. You have to really believe it’s right for you, because it does identify you as a Muslim, and of course in this day and age, it’s hard to stand out as a Muslim, without taking a lot of flak from others.

    I definitely would not link the hijab to the injustices that some Muslims do in the name of the religion, or the wrong that Muslim men do to Muslim women. It’s all about Allah, and nothing else matters. If some women feel that it is being forced upon them, then they definitely should not be doing it, because Allah judges us according to our intentions before our actions. My goal in life is Allah, insha’Allah, to Know Him, and serve Him to the best of my abilities; this is hard, it’s a struggle, especially living in this earthly realm and being affected and influenced by other humans and their actions.

    Each person has her own story to play out, and as humans we have to learn to repect each other and accept that another person may not see things the way you see them. What makes you a Muslim is the belief in One God and the acceptance of His last prophet, pbuh, as the seal of the messengers on earth.

  4. October 17, 2006 3:19 pm

    Shaharazad,

    That is a very interesting story.

    I agree, wearing the veil, scarf or hijab doesn not make one a muslim or non-muslim and it is a choice that one needs to make for themselves. Unfortunately, I know women who wear hijab and it is not because they chose to, rather it has become something that has become a part of them because their parents made them wear it.

    I know too many women that wear it not because they believe that Allah wants women to wear it, but because the scarf gives them an identity. It identifies them as a muslim.

    I wrote this piece not to insult anyone that wears hijab or to say that hijab is a symbol of repression. Rather I was trying to say that in my case to wear a veil would be to please our muslim brothers and sisters and then I gave the reasons as to why I can not do it for that reason.

    I did not mean to link hijab as an identity to repression, although I do understand that the western world tries to make it that.

  5. shaharazed permalink
    October 18, 2006 2:37 am

    Salaams Samaha,

    As always, you explain yourself very well. And I do admire you for really doing the soul-searching on this issue; as stated it has to be from you not because of someone else.

    By the way, everything we do should be done with conviction, not just the wearing of a piece of cloth on our heads; whether it’s prayer, fasting or pilgrammage.

    In this one video that I have linked on my site about salah (prayer), Suhaib Webb discusses how people grew up being told they had to pray or ordered to do it without being given the reasoning behind it; as a result many people grow up and abandon the prayer because they have bad associations with it. How beautiful it is to teach our children that prayer time is a special time for communication between us and Allah; a time to reconnect with the Divine. Anyways, he explains many ways we can bring our children and ourselves a better appreciation for the prayer so that it is really done from the heart and not just because we were told to pray.

    Also , for another perspective on the hijab check out this post on this blog: Thoughts on hijab: Post-Kharabsheh

  6. October 18, 2006 3:30 am

    I know very little about Islam but I found this prayer so touching. It brought tears to my eyes.

  7. October 18, 2006 5:02 pm

    Salaam Shaharazed!

    Thank you for understanding and the encouragement.

    Of course we should to everything with conviction and not just out of habit or ritual. It is what brings us closer to god.

    I will check out your video later today. My children all go to full-time Islamic school and I am on the board of the school. My oldest is 14 and knows no other education than the Islamic education. My two oldest read and write arabic as well as they do English and my heart is filled with joy everytime I listen to them practice. I still believe as you have said that we can still instill within our children from home certain values that they may not get from school.

    Thank you for the link, I will check that out as well🙂

  8. October 18, 2006 5:10 pm

    Helen,

    I never thought that this could trigger such a reaction from people. Thank you so much for your comment as it is really motivating.

    I hope to see you again.

  9. November 10, 2006 1:34 pm

    Wow! This is a lovely post! I really enjoyed this and completely relate to it!

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  1. post o’ the day: Samaha on Muslim veils « raincoaster

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