Sunday, August 30, 2009

When would I consider this "second wife" business

I am the first wife, so first off, I should begin with when I would accept a second wife (and a third:p). Or maybe I should begin with, I am the only wife, and my husband isn't looking. First off, my mother would kill him if he took a second wife (she is a non-muslim) and my mother-in-law (she is a Saudi Muslimah) would kill him. And being that it is against the law in my country it would make our lives difficult in general. And since it isn't a practice in my husband's family it would have to come out of some out-of-the-ordinary circumstances for us, since my husband is adamant that polygamy is a sunnah of exception, not a sunnah that is mustahaab. He says he would only consider it if half the male population were physically wiped out, and even then he still thinks that he would be too selfish to treat a gaggle of females fairly. It is alot of work, he says, upkeeping one wife, should she desire not to work one day, and to support all your possible children Islamically, helping them with the expenses of education and marriage and getting their first home.

BTW all, this post came out of some thinking after reading Aalia's post [here: http://chasing-jannah.blogspot.com/2009/08/ask-co-wife-interview.html ].
Still, I know women (even seeing my husband happily married to me!) eye my husband up as possible marriage material. One waitress at my favourite restaurant [not a Muslimah alhamdulilah---- I mean in this situation I would have been saddened by a Muslimah behaving this way--- not that I don't hope she comes to Islam:p] approached my husband with her phone number after I went to the restroom. The owner of the premise happened to be within earshot. "No thank-you Ma'aam, I am married," my husband informed her. "It doesn't matter," waitress said. "No thank-you," my husband said. After she went away the owner came up to my husband and apologised. (Yeah, it doesn't hurt that the owner is one of my favourite clients from my old job unbeknownst to my husband and she is the sweetest and most fiesty and independent lady EVER lol). She (the owner) informed my husband the matter would be taken care of, and she fired said waitress after service. My husband relates the experience to me, afraid it will make me feel insecure. He doesn't need to worry. I trust him already. Some Emirati chick already tried to pull the same thing. My husband generally doesn't look a woman in the eyes and always remains a respectful distance. The fact is, studies have proven, that women are more attracted to married (or engaged in a relationship) men than unmarried ones. It is wired into our brains:p Not that that is ANY excuse for behaviour without hayaa (modesty) and taqwa (fear of Allah).

Despite what alot of misinformed people think, polygamy is not encouraged in Islam. In Judaism and Christianity polygamy existed (with NOOOOOOooooooooo cap on how many wives you could have) up until the Jewish priesthood and the Christian church (not the teachings of either faith) put a kibosh on that. Islam actuallywas the first to make a move to do anything about multiple wives. Islam said you could ONLY EVER have four wives at the same time. It further specified that a man could only marry more than one woman if he could physically and mentally and spiritually treat all the women he aimed to marry fairly and equally. Which is where my husband whines, but I don't want to... Personally, I think he is CAPABLE, but I do not think he is WILLING to work that hard lol.

There is also another thing about that ayah in the Qu'ran permitting polygamy (allowing of course the four cap and the fairness part) that many forget, but let me quote it in whole first before explaining in depth:

And if you have reason to fear that you might not act equitably towards orphans, then marry from among [the] women such as are lawful to you - [even] two, or three, or four: but if you have reason to fear that you might not be able to treat them with equal fairness, then [only] one ...

THIS ayah SAYS THAT if you cannot be fair towards the orphans (which unmarried reverts, divorced women without families, and orphan children all are) [fair, means limit yourself to halal conduct and give sadaqah] IF YOU CANNOT DO JUST THIS, then, you should marry, to stop yourself from taking advantage of them or doing things improper. This is part of it (who you can marry when marrying more than one), coming before the cap, and coming before the "treat them fairly" bit. So if a man is marrying more than one wife, it should be a woman who is alone in the world, with little or no support. THEN, on top of that, if adds, of these women in your care, if you would marry one, do not marry another if you cannot treat her fair. It does not say you should marry three, or four, lol, if you can take care of the women without improriety within the shariah. But it says, to prevent impropriety you should marry them. Which doesn't make marriage to more than one a recommendation of the religion. The recommendation is that marriage itself stops impropriety, and the best kind of women to marry if one must marry, are those women who have no one to care for them, and really, the ayah states, that the only reason to marry more than one is to care for orphans (whether they be children who need a mother who is financially and emotionally capable to raise them, a divorced woman, a widowed woman, or a woman without family). It is quite literal, and is obvious in the Arabic AND translated text. I will say of course there are many men that abuse the meaning of the text, and thus so-called Islamic polygamy gets a bad rap, but that is not how it is. How it truly is, is very unselfish on the man's part, and an act of charity (not lust and self-satisfaction).

So having studied the sunnah of multiple marriages, I can conclude, I would accept if my husband married a second wife (even if our families both disowned us for this or my country prosecuted us for this) if she was:

a. a divorced woman who could find no other good Muslim man to marry her and she was lonely and having difficulty supporting herself and maybe even her kids (I'd be willing to work to help support her too even though Islamically my husband couldn't marry another if he alone couldn't come up with the income),

b. a revert sister without a Muslim family who couldn't find a husband but was lonely,

c. a widowed woman in the same condition as woman a..,

d. If I could not have children and my husband wanted some (then obviously he could marry from a, b, and c)

e. If I had some horrible illness that made me a vegatble, or like, paralyzed, or fatigued to the point of vegetation lol (here, and only here, he could marry any woman that he wants).

In all cases but e. I would have some further criteria... I'd have to get along with the other woman, so I'd have to approve of her too, on top of my husband approving of her. Personally, myself, I'd want us all to live in the same house (but a big house, with each wife having her own floor). I wouldn't want side by side bedrooms, ya know? Ick. But I wouldn't want my husband sleeping under another roof. I would feel vulnerable then. But I guess I would be able to live with it if wife two or three or four from categories a. and c. already owned their own properties and didn't want to sell them or move their kids. But that would be hard for me. I perfer the monster house with our own sections idea.

One of the happiest marriages I have ever seen was like this (there were three wives and two were close in age [the second and the third (the third was a divorcee with an abusive family)] and the second wife was a widow from her first marriage and was thirty years older than their husband and she was like the Mommy one the other two went to for advice. There were all extroidanarily close, and obviously, the husband sought out women that needed help and that would get along, and thus, lol, the marriage was actually harder on him (since he had to work to support all three) than it was one them. Plus, lol, since they were all so close, if he ever truly messed up, usually all three would be mad to him together lol.

So I have seen it work. So I know I could do it, if it was done right. I am totally not into the guy needing another woman (who isn't in need) when nothing is wrong with his first wife (so what, she gained some baby weight, what have you done lately?hmmm?!). I would do it if divorced or widowed if the wife or wives sat at the same table as the husband and no one was just picking me as the baby-making machine or the sex toy ya know? If that were the case I'd wind up divorced pretty fast because becuase I require intellectual depth from a spouse and require to be required for the same.

I`d also want the big house compared to seperate houses because of my own preferences. And I would never, never agree to marry a man if I knew he was already married and his wife wasn`t involved in the process. That`s about it.

I know I don`t have to worry about it in the slightest, but I thought I`d get all my thoughts and reasonings out, lol, to understand my entire stance on the issue.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Beautiful Eid Outfit for the Munaqaba

Brown abaya from http://www.al-hijaab.com/scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=1673 for $40.00 GBP.

Brown niqab from http://www.sunnahstyle.com/product_info.php?pName=tie-back-butterfly-niqab-dark-chocolate&cName=niqabs-specialty-niqabs for $17.99 USD.

Mid Ramadaan Post

Salaam alaykom ramatullah wa barakto. InshaAllah all of you are having a peaceful and rewarding Ramadaan. I know I am. As such, I haven't been on the blog or replying to comments all that much so unless I do an Islamic study on my own time that you ladies might be interested in too, the only thing I'll be posting this month are things (such as fashion sets) I have already saved on the laptop. Mainly to clear it off, because after this Eid I'll be off to the Gulf with a new lap top (and my girls) where we hope to do alot more street style, lol. So hope you don't mind. I will get through going through comments at the end of Ramdaan, inshaAllah. Thank you for taking the time to make them!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Qu'ran-Only Versus Qu'ran & Ahadith

For Marissa: When I first reverted to Islam I stated I would only follow the Qu'ran, which is perfect, and never go with the confusing and sometimes falsified hadith. Alhamdulilah, knowledge has revealed to me that in order to obey the Qu'ran one MUST follow the ahadith (sayings and actions of the Prophet Mohammed (sallalahu alahi wa salaam): of course, only those with authentic chains of narration. And this is where one cannot be lazy Muslim but instead must be a seeker of knowledge. Like me, you would probably want evidence from Allah subhanhu wa ta'ala to come to this understanding.

The Qu'ran says:

Qur'an 4: 64 "We sent not a messenger but to be obeyed, in accordance with the will of Allah." Qur'an 4:80 "He who obeys the Messenger obeys Allah." Qur'an 5:92 "Obey Allah and obey the Messenger, and beware!" Qur'an 24:53 "Say: 'Swear not; Obedience is (more) reasonable.' Say: 'Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger." Qur'an 48:10 "Verily those who swear allegiance to you (Muhammad), indeed swear their allegiance to Allah." and of course, the most valid ayah for me pertaining to following the Prophet's sunnah: "And whatever the Messenger gives you, take it; and whatever he forbids you, abstain from it." (59:7).

If you did not follow the ahadith, you would not know how to make wudu (only that you would have to wash), and your would not know how many rakat you have to pray, or how to do so. You also wouldn't have some of the most beautiful sayings about women, such as that they are not to be beaten (i.e harmed), and that temporary marriage marriage is forbidden till the day of judgement (yet it is not forbidden in the Qu'ran at the point when the ayah was revealed) or explaination through example of many of the commands in the Qu'ran that would have been clear to the Sahaba (such as how the khimar should be worn) but less so to us today as we forget how the Jewish and Christian women covered at the time, and how we did so to differentiate ourselves from them.

The hadith are the recorded sayings and actions of our messenger, may peace and blessings be on him and his family. InshaAllah I will write another post soon on about how to research a ruling (first taking into account the source of the hadith, then its chain of narration, what it meant in context, and what stage in the seerah (Prophet's life) was it revealed, and then, what other hadiths there on the subject, and the same for them, so one as a complete picture. If it is a hadith where Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala is commanding something be forbidden or something be now halal that is already and before halal or forbidden in the Qu'ran, the authentic hadith actually overrides this because the Qu'ran says: "If We abrogate [overule with something better] a verse or cause it to be forgotten [its true purpose no longer adherred to], We will replace it by better one or one similar." 2:106. The Qu'ran continuously commands us and advises us to follow the actions of the Prophet Mohammed sallalahu alahi wa salaam, and if one is to study the seerah (story) of the Prophet's life, one will see this is exactly the manner the sahaba acted in. So to do that we have to rely on valid hadith, and Bukhari's ahadith are the most widely researched, he having sought his whole life to collect hadith, find their chain of narration, and eliminate any of those that have been falsified.
It has been unanimously agreed by scholars that Imam Bukhari's work is the most authentic of all the other works in Hadith literature put together. The authenticity of Al Bukhari's work is such that the religious learned Scholars of Islam said concerning him: The most authentic book after the Book of Allah is sahih Al Bukhari.' Imam Bukhari was born on 13th Shawwal in the year 194 A.H in Bukhara in the territory of Khurasan (West Turkistan). His real name is Muhammad bin Ismail bin Al-Mughirah Al-Bukhari. His father died when he was still a young child and he was looked after by his mother. At the age of ten he started acquiring the knowledge of Hadith. He travelled to Makka when he was sixteen years old accompanied by his mother and elder brother. It seemed as though Imam Bukhari loved Makka and its learned religious scholars for he remained in Makka after bidding farewell to his mother and brother. He spent two years in Makka and then went to Al-Madina. After spending a total of six years in Al-Hijaz which comprises MAkka and Al-Madina, he left for Basra, Kufa and Baghdad and visited many other places including Egypt and Syria. He came to Baghdad on many occasions. He met many religious learned scholars including Imam Ahmad Bin Hanbal. Owing to his honesty and kindness and the fact that he was trustworthy he used to keep away from the princes and rulers for fear that he may incline to say things to please them.Many a story has been told about Imam Bukhari regarding his struggles in collecting Hadith literature. He travelled to many different places gathering the precious gems that fell from the lips of the Noble Prophet Muhammad. It is said that Imam Bukhari collected over 300 000 Ahadith and he himself memorized 200 000 of which some were unreliable. He was born at a time when Hadith was being forged either to please rulers or kings or to corrupt the religion of Islam. It was a great task for him to sift the forged Ahadith from the authentic ones. He laboured day and night and although he had memorised such a large number he only chose approximately 7275 with repetition and about 2230 without repetition of which there is no doubt about their authenticity.Before he recorded each hadith, he would make ablution and offer a two Rakat prayer and supplicate his Lord (Allah). Many religious scholars of Islam tried to find fault in the great remarkable collection, but without success. It is for this reason, they unanimously agreed that the most authentic book after the Book of Allah is Sahih Al-Bukhari.Imam Bukhari died on first Shawwal in the year 256 A.H and was buried in Khartank, a village near Samarkand. May Allah have mercy on his soul.
More about following the Prophet's Example In Order to Understand and Obey the Qu'ran: Qur'an 33.21 "Verily in the Messenger of Allah you have a good example for him who looks unto Allah and the Last Day." Qur'an 60.4 "There is for you an excellent example, a pattern in Abraham and those with him[ie: Mohammad], when they said to their people: 'We are through with you and with what you worship besides Allah. We reject you. Hostility and hate have come between us forever, unless you believe in Allah only.'" Qur'an 6.83 "And this was Our argument which we gave to Abraham against his people. And We gave him Ishaq (Isaac) and Yah'qub (Jacob) [; each did We guide, and Nuh (Noah) did We guide before, and of his descendants, David and Solomon, and Job and Joseph and Moses and Aaron; and thus do We reward those who do good (following Muhammad's example in the Sunnah). And Zachariah and Yahya (John), Isa (Jesus) and Elias; every one was of the good [i.e. Muslims]; And Ishmael and Elisha and Jonah and Lot and every one We preferred above men and jinn."

The one thing you have to do sometimes, is seek out a scholar, and see if a hadith is authentic, i.e, has a solid chain of narration. For example, the hadith about Asmaa coming to the Prophet sallalalhu alahi wa salaam and her clothes being thin and a bit see-through, and him telling her to cover everything but her face and hands? Its narration actually has not connection to the person who is supposed to be narrating it. Also, if the hadith seems harsh, knowing its context often helps. There are alot of weak (no solid chain of narration) hadiths out there, and even worse, some fabricated ones, so I often use scholars who can research chains of narration. But there is a direct command in the Qu'ran to take what the Messenger recommends us, and to leave what he forbids us, so... that is why I follow the sahih ahdith and the Qu'ran. I find Qu'ran-alone Muslims lacking in some of the five pillars, and actually disobeying multiple commands in the Qu'ran.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Ruffled Abaya

Looking for an abaya with tiers of ruffles? I found one style (it comes in a few different colours beyond black) available here http://bintq.com/designerabayas.html.

Imaan Collections launches their Eid Collection

MashaAllah I was so happy to get the email from ImaanCollections in my inbox with the above pic on a Ramadan mubarak wish from the site, because that is soooooo my personal style:D. Aalia, remember my navy jumper with pink hear buttons (the buttons were usually covered by a pink hijab). Anyways, I love their stuff. A bit too pricey for everyday wear for me, but I can get inspiration and splurge for a special peice if I have the occasion to.
FOR THE PARTY GIRL:
FOR THE COSMO/I HAVE A JOB GIRL:
THE SLIGHLYMORE URBANE/STREET STYLE SISTA:

IN PROGRESS: The Qu'ran

Surah Al Jinn (Chapter 72) "The Jinn/the Spirits"

Surah Muzzammil (Chapter 73) "The One Wrapped in Garments"

Surah Al-Muddathir (Chapter 74) "The One Enveloped"

Surah Al Qiyamah (Chapter 75) "The Resurection"

Surah Al-Insan (Chapter 76) "Man"

Surah Al-Mursalaat (Chapter 77) "Those Sent Forth"

Surah An Naba (Chapter 78) "The Great News"

Surah An Nazi'at (Chapter 79) "Those Who Pull Out"

Surah Abaser (Chapter 80) "He Frowned"

Surah At Takwir (Chapter 81) "The Overthrowing"

Surah Al Infitar (Chapter 82) "The Cleaving"

Surah Al Mutaffifin (Chapter 83) "Those Who Deal In Fraud"

Surah Al Inshiqaq (Chapter 84) "The Splitting Asunder"

Surah Al Burooj (Chapter 85) "The Stars"

Surah At Tariq (Chapter 86) "The Nightcomer"

Surah Al 'Ala (Chapter 87) "The Most High"

Surah Al-Ghashiyah (Chapter 88) "The Overwhelming"

Surah Al Fajr (Chapter 89) "The Dawn"

Surah Al Balad (Chapter 90) "The City"

Surah Ash Shams (Chapter 91) "The Sun"

Surah Al Layl (Chapter 92) "The Night"

Surah Ad Duha (Chapter 93) "The Forenoon"

Surah As Sharh (Chapter 94) "The Opening/Gushing Forth"

Surah At Tin (Chapter 95) "The Fig"

Surah Al 'Alaq (Chapter 96) "The Clot"

Surah Al Qadr (Chapter 97) "The Night of Decree"

Surah Al Bayyinah (Chapter 98) "The Clear Evidence"

Surah Az Zalzalah (Chapter 99) "The Earthquake"

Surah Al 'Adiyat (Chapter 100) "Those that Run"

Surah Al Qariah (Chapter 101) "The Striking Hour"

Surah At Takathur (Chapter 102) "the piling up"

Surah Al 'Asr (Chapter 103) "the Time"

Surah Al Hamazah (Chapter 104) "The Slanderer"

Surah Al Fil (Chapter 105) "The Elephant"

Surah Quaraysh (Chapter 106) "The Tribe of Quaraysh"

Surah Al Ma'um (Chapter 107) "Almsgiving"

Surah Al Kauthar (Chapter 108) "A River in Paradise"

Surah Al Kafiroon (Chapter 109) "The Disbelievers"

Surah An Nasr (Chapter 110) "The Help"

Surah Al Masad (Chapter 111) "The Palm Fibre"

Surah Al Iklas (Chapter 112) "The Purity"

Surah Al Falaq (Chapter 113) "The Daybreak"

Surah An Nas (Chapter 114) "Mankind, or The People"

Friday, August 21, 2009

Thursday, August 20, 2009

"Hijabifying", the definition, in English

In the world of Islamic fashion blogging, a new word has come into existance: "Hijabify". We all use it, perhaps to the confusion and annoyance of some, and the applause and adoration of others. It means different things to different bloggers. Surprisingly, it is not on wikipedia yet, so I thought I'd help ya'll all out.

Hi.jab.i.fy. (hee-jab-i-fy)
most commonly used as a verb
ex. To hijabify this look you will need ...

1. To make high fashion and street wear into Islamic clothing by adapting it to cover the body parts required to be covered in the authentic sunnah (everything but the hands and face * see requirements of a Muslim Woman's Dress) in the manner required in the authentic sunnah (loose, not see-through, or for show and pride, and an overgarment *see requirements of a Muslim Woman's Dress), or taking inspiration from a non-Islamic source through colours and accessories but not straying from any of the requirements of a Muslim Woman's Dress.
2.) Slap a headscarf onto anything so long as there is no skin or very little skin showing.
3.) To make high fashion and street wear into Islamic clothing by adapting it to cover everything but the face and hands in a manner that is loose and not see-through, or taking inspiration from a non-Islamic source through colours and accessories but not straying from any of the requirements of a Muslim Woman's Dress.

My def. is the first one, because I read the command in the Qu'ran and the ahadiths. I respect the third one though I disagree with it on the grounds of modifying the Qu'ran to the extent of rejecting it, because at least it is thoughtfully-based on Islamic ideas and principles. Unfortunately, the second definition is FAR TOO COMMON in the hijab world. Say you take for inspiration the non-hijab picture below. You take the exact same dress and belt. You layer a skin-tight carina turtle-neck under it and skinny jeans under it. And you call it hijabifying it, even though, in Islam, this outfit you have created (first set, top of the page) BARES NONE OF the characteristics of Islamic hijab since it conceals nothing but the skin. It actually does not hide the body parts. Clothed but naked. As labelled in the hijabified-but-not-anything-to-do-with-hijab-but-scarf hijab set, a. the cut of the top/dress emphasises the bust line and cleavage width, b. the belt ephasizes the waist and thus the hips and butt and bust-line, c. the only-thing overgarment about it is from the ribcage to the thigh, and d. as much as I hate it to say it because I think all covering is good, the outfit would be more modest without the headscarf and the tight jeans. You'd just look like a cute, pretty girl, rather than sexy Muslimah. Sexy in the sexual tense cannot be comprised with "hijab" in any Islamic sense. If you have no clothes but such dresses and skinny jeans and can't afford new clothes inshaAllah PLEASE contact fellow sisters (feel free even to leave a comment here on this blog) and I will do my best to get you some more modest attire, and Allah subhanhu wa ta'ala accepts you intentions. If you're not in the third world though, and you've been Muslim for over two years (past puberty), this form of bad hijab isn't excusable anymore.
So what if you loosen up? If you have a hard time finding loose skirts and dresses in suitable non-clingy fabrics or jilbabs, this look is quite acceptable and pretty modest (I personally don't think it is dressing according to the sunnah but I do think it is modest). Wide-leg trouser pants, full-sleeved top, long top over top and loose top over the bust (girls often use shrugs). Um, a. just loose the belt and make sure your hijab covers your chest, and b. know the jilbab [an overgarment] is of the sunnah and is a command in the Qu'ran for the believing women.
I really think this here on below, the third set, is the best example of "hijabifying" since it is using clothing that is, on its own as peices, unislamic in what and how it covers, but combined, it actually forms a modest overgarment. As you can see, the belt has been lost and the pink of the inspiration peice has been replaced in the skirt and with the clutch. A long light sweater shrug flows loosely away from the body, drawing attention away from the curves of a woman's body, and the hijab aka khimar (the proper word for the headscarf is khimar and not hijab) is pulled over the chest as the Qu'ran commands the believing women to do.
Now, "hijabifying" can also be done to traditionally Islamic clothing (ha ha ha, I love this cuz I find it easier and I end up spending less money and being more comfortable in my clothes but to each their own) by taking a jilbab or long khimar, ect, and using a non-Islamic inspiration source, use some of the colours and accessories from the look to make a "halal-take" on the style. For example, instead of using a belt, I would take the colour of the belt and use a clutch. Instead of the earrings, a ring. This post took a long time to do, so I am tired and off to bed:D

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

As salaam alaykom ramatullah wa barakato sisters!

InshaAllah Ramadaan approaches and for most of us it is a mere matter of one or two days. InshaAllah if you have clear skies, try and go by when the moon is sighted by your local masjids. If there are no local masjids to go by, try and watch the news or find the closest Masjid or city on a look out of the web. I believe, should we see the moon hear, or in Vancouver, ect... Ramadaan should start Thursday or this friday.

InshaAllah we can all be worthy of the blessings of this month of mercy. I am so excited. Just letting everyone know, um, something is up with my computer which is making its internet usage kinda hazardous. It is freezing and randomly shutting down alot, so I am gonna try and get my husband to fix it when he time.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Islamic Cultural Festival

Hey, sorry for not getting back to anyone, finishing half-finished posts, or getting back to the comments with questions in them, but I got distracted by the Islamic Cultural Festival that we went to on the weekend:

Yeah, it was alot of cultural (the Saudis had a HUGE section), with dances and stuff (Indonesian little girls, Saudi men from different provinces) but there was Qu'ran recitation, and alot of dawah materials, henna, and a calligraphy/henna area. My purse weighed sooooooo much with the free Qu'rans in different languages. The husband and I always end up with lots of converts/reverts or people inquiring about Islam so I took the oppurtunity to stock up on some dawah materials. MashaAllah the dawah committty managed to help me get a brother and sister a Chinese translation of the Qu'ran, and the only one they were short on was Spanish. Which I needed but... hey. But I forgot to grab a Korean one. So at least I got the group's email so I can order one for one woman asking in the Masjid who has trouble following the arabic/english khutbah.

What I ABSOLUTELY LOVED is that whenever the Qu'ran was recited the clouds did part and it was sunny. Serriously. Ask anyone that was there, subhanAllah. I also found it hilarious that just before the dancers from Saudi were about to preform their tribal dances (they had Mekkah and Medina with their stick dance with a video available here
, the interior represented with a very dull sword waving dance, and the South with a very enthusiastic jumping hand-waving dance [this is my husband's and it always makes me laugh but it isn't that elegant] , a dog walked by homeless people decided to urinate on their preformance place. They announced to the crowd that they were having technical difficulties until a brother bought a water bottle and poured it over the cement:D. Yeah, hear a dog bark and watch a predominately Muslim crowd freak out:D

They had henna to draw in people, and snakes you could hold, and lots of little booths to tell you about different Islamic countries. We spent about four hours there, and then went out for lunch after dhuhr. We happened to run into a sister we had lost contact with, and alhamdulilah she is well. I was also happy to see the brothers dressed in their Islamic clothing. I wish the ones from my city did not feel they had to take it off, returning on the ferry. To all the brothers out there, I am proud of you for your thobes and your beards and your long tunic shirts, and your loose pants, and your kufis. We are supposed to dress as believers and that is not just the women, so mashaAllah to the brothers that came out visibly as Muslim men. You made me proud to wear my niqab:p

For more on the Van. festival, check out their webpage http://www.cice.ca/location.html.

Friday, August 14, 2009

IN PROGRESS Juma Mubarak: My Advice for Sisters Thinking of Marrying Saudis

Juma Mubarak,

In light of certain events, I have decided to do a post on advice for women thinking of marrying Saudis, co-authored by my husband (a Saudi---so no one can say I am bashing Saudis in anyway). This can be applied to any person thinking of getting married, but it is written from the only perspective that I know.

OUR ADVICE FOR SISTERS THINKING OF MARRYING SAUDIS (OR ANY OTHER GCC GUY)
by Y and Pixie

Pixie: Alhamdulilah, I am married to a Saudi man and everything worked out and yes, we are a couple deeply in love, and yes, everything has worked out for us and when people see how we treat eachother they forget that it is not easy.

Y: Marriages are never easy, but people [Saudis] look at us, and see us, and think, "I can do that" and they don't realize what ...[Pixie] and I have given up for to be with eachother. They [Saudi guys] also look at how ...[Pixie] and I met in school [before Pixie had converted] and want the same kind of meeting.

Pixie: Ain't gonna happen, lol. Not with a practicing Muslimah. I (as a practicing Muslimah) am not gonna look twice at a brother until I am approached with a meeting with a wali et all. And I was kinda like that even before Islam. I didn't want someone to defend my honor at the time, but I didn't want to waste my time. Western girl and Saudi guy seemed like a bad match from the get-go. Until I had Islam, I didn`t see too much in common with me and Y, besides a guy that liked my morals and sort of idealized the charitable person I was. Which was a bad thing to me. When you put someone on a pedastal, they are gonna fall from that pedastal, and shatter that image you have of them. So don`t marry an image, be it beauty or ethics.

Y: Love at first sight can be dumb at first sight, lol. I forgot how much you talk. Advice to the brothers, think with you head, not your heart. My wife actually told me to do this before I got to know her for the purpose of marriage. It`s good advice.

Pixie: [to Y] I wasn't star-struck with you ya know. That was all you. I was like, I am too busy in my life and Saudi men are the scum of their earth, the way they treat their women. Prejudiced as I was, lol. So we got to know eachother, but didn't flirt. It was all very-workplace, since I worked at the school. With a Muslimah, you know it is going to be marriage if you guys have to contribute to anything other than work or an Islamic issue or greeting ya know? So it is like you skip this step in an Islamic way of getting to know eachother. Which is good, because you don`t get an illusion of the person. A mistake Y and I made was having overly idealistic images of the other person. Believe me, just cause a girl took care of orphans, it doesn`t make her an easy sweet person to live with, lol.

Y: No kidding, lol. Your family warned me.

Pixie: One thing Y did was he went to meet my family right away. Y told my father of his intentions in a way that would be honest (marriage is my purpose) but that wouldn`t weird my non-muslim father out. And this was before I was even interested in him.

Y: Remember, she wasn`t Muslim yet, otherwise, I would have gone through the Masjid, got the Sheikh to speak to her. But she would have been offended then,

Pixie: Yeah, I was prejudiced. Patronizing Islam I would have scoffed. LOL. When I became Muslim, that really changed. And I did this A YEAR AWAY from having anything to do with or speaking with Y, revert I mean. It did have nothing to do with him, as I had no interest in him UNTIL I became a Muslim.

Y: Thanks.

Pixie:p

Y: When she became a Muslim, I knew I had to treat her how I would want my sister to be treated. None of this cultural bull-****. Some Saudi guys think of her as a Canadian girl, but she`s not. She`s a Muslim woman. That comes first. Be patient in explaining the shariah-way of doing things with her, if she gets offended by them, or thinks you are trying to tell her what to do when you are simply telling her what Islam says is the right way for you to conduct yourself around her. Let her realize it. If she is a convert, she will, when she studies more. She`ll end up knowing more than you, more than likely, and will end up teaching you things.

Pixie: Yes, don`t let a guy treat you in a way his father never treated his mother, or in a way different than he`d want a man courting his sister to be. Let him be the kind of man he wants for his sister. You`ll make him better, and if he is going to change to be a better person, this`ll be the only way that`ll come from himself. Because people don`t get better (I mean you can`t change them) so be prepared for them to get worse. If they get 40% worse in something that annoys you will you still love them ... i.e like being around them, then you have a chance. As a woman, please educate yourself about the ideal Muslim man (don`t expect to see him instantly though) so you can know what you will need in your life. As a convert, you might not see yourself as overly religious in the early stages of your marriage, so you might reject more religious men, but find later on that the man you ended up marrying does not fulfill your Islamic requirements of a husband (he keeps you away from your deen rather than helps you pursue it).

Y: Find a wali that knows the character of the man you are thinking about marrying but is Islamic enough to give the idiot up in a heartbeat if he does anything low to you. Your wali has to care more about Islam than he does finding either of you a mate. And any good wali has to take the Islamic rights of the woman over the cultural ones of the man. The wali should also be practical, not Islamically idealistic, so he can point out where both of you are going to have difficulty should your Islamic manners fail upon occasion (and they will).

Pixie: Saudis like many Arabs are very family-orientated. Determine very early on where you are going to live, and if the family approves of you. If the man is not willing to share the idea of taking a foreign wife with his family, then leave the situation. And lol, of course, consider if they only disaprove because they don`t know you, or they object to the idea of anyone not from an elite social group. The latter there is no hope for. If the man says he`ll cut off all but Islamic ties because his family is behaving so unislamically after he`s tried everything, then consult your wali if it is still safe to go ahead.

Y: Try and get the support of both your families. Family is very important in Islam, and while we as men owe our first obligation to our mothers, we should not support our mothers in unislamic behaviours. The Islamic way is the best way.


WILL WRITE MORE LATER INSHAALLAH, we have to get ready for juma.

ILH Summer Sale Items

Please note, to purchase you must join
I ♥ Hishma's facebook group: I ♥ Hishma online Summer SALE. I do not feild any orders through the blog. You can veiw the sale items under the sale announcement where pictures are displayed and request under them their item number so the adminstrator of the group/brand can give you the ordering information. InshaAllah when we launch the website/online store ordering will get easier:p
Some cute Saudi dresses coming your way:

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Converticitus doesn't equal Religious, duh

I get mad at some people who accuse me of being "extreme" about my religion because I am a revert and I am following the sunnah according to the fiqh I feel most confident in (I am not saying you have to follow the exact same fiqh as me---look at me and my girl Aalia---we're friends through fiqh and thin and often diagree on things), (I am saying at least be informed about what the Qu'ran say, what the Prophet sallalahu alahi wa salaam said/did, and the opinions of the companions of the Prophet sallalahu alahi wa salaam on the matter---make an effort to learn so you won't be calling anyone crazy on something that is actually a REAL PART OF ISLAM). Don't be lazy. Just because your parents or your culture tells you something is true about Islam, find out if it really is. My culture told me ya'll were wife-beaters and ignorant unhappy stay-at-home Moms. I figured I'd look a little deeper.

"Converticitus" isn't praying five times a day (on time), not plucking the eyebrows, refusing to deal with riba, wearing jilbab (maybe niqab), learning about matters such as stringed instruments being made unlawful by Allah....

As a convert, I can tell you, converticitus is the period when you are told so many different things about Islam, and you don't have enough of a background to determine fiqh from daleel, fatwa from hadith, lol, and so you try to do everything or flat out reject something even though you don't understand it. If you are wearing niqab and someone asks you why you are wearing it and you don't have a clue, either you are trying to fit in with your new Gulf in-laws, OR, you have a case of conveticitus. It doesn't last forever. After being Muslim for more than three years, you really can't accuse me of having conveticitus. Yes, I am still AMAZED AND AWED by the wonderful GIFT that is Islam everyday (and miffed at born Muslims that don't get it---but I know alot of born Muslims that are miffed at Muslims that don't get it too) but I now know my basics and how to think Islamically (there is a science to it---we call it fiqh and inshaAllah my studies will continue until I know enough to call myself a fool because only a wise man knows how little he knows).

Islam requires learning. We should all pray five times a day. We should all be able to read fusha (classical arabic). We should all be able to recite half the Qu'ran at least. We recite song lyrics from pop songs, know the names of celebrities (but do we know the stories of the Sahaba?), we watch TV for a few hours but do we read the Qu'ran a few hours? And don't think I am lecturing, this is a reminder first and foremost to myself, me being a lazy Arabic student. I am bad at pronunciation when reading so I prefer to just memorize the Surahs from listening, but reading will inshaAllah bring great reward for the Muslim, so make dua for me okay, if you will, lol, that I try a bit harder and Allah makes it easier on me.

I want to hear the adhan called before I sleep and when I wake. I miss the sound. I have fajr alarm, but really, it is not the same as the peace of a truly salat-centered society. InshaAllah my sisters. One day. If we work on ourselves. If we seek help from Allah, and praise Allah when that help arrives.

And stop calling devoutness to an aspect of the religion "extreme", a "tendancy among reverts for salafism/wahabism", "Converticitus"... InshaAllah.

Ameen. Allah help us.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Featured Blogger: Kimdonesia

Once a month I like to try and feature a fellow sister's blog that I have fun reading, especially when they do a super-cool meaningful post like the following. August's featured blogger is Kim from Kimdonesia. Her blog is available here: http://kimdonesia.blogspot.com/
Kim, check back for your award icon to post on your blog (I am at work so I can't post pics or make up anything cool for you).

So I repeat, the post re-posted below is not written by me, its by Kim, but in case you haven't heard of her, she's another great blogger whose stuff is fun to read:D

Oh Islamophobe, you will never win by Kim, of Kimdonesia.

Each morning, the Islamophobe wakes with a frown. His fingers quiver and long for the keyboard and mouse, and he is drawn to the computer like a drug addict. He needs to feed his hunger, his desire.

Pornography? No. Alcohol? No. He needs to fulfill his strong obsession with Islam. The chemical imbalance in his brain leads him to believe Islam is filled with hatred, when he fails to realize that HE is the one who is filled with hatred. HE is the one with the black heart. HE is the one who is diseased.He turns on the computer, opens his web browser and accesses Youtube. When he types something into the search bar, such as "Islam is evil", he sighs with relief. This is all he needs to convince him that what he fears - Islam - is "wrong" and "the enemy". However, his heart tells him otherwise.Within his heart is fear. Strong, sickening fear. A fear that will take over this person's life and occupy his days, leading him to dedicate much of his time to trying to eliminate this fear.

This is the fear that Islam will dominate his own town someday. His own country. Or perhaps he fears that one of his family members, or close friends, will be drawn to this "hateful" religion. He tries to hide this fear by attacking a 17-year-old Muslim girl on her Youtube channel, trying to pull her away from Islam but her feet are in concrete. She will not budge.The 17-year-old girl smells this fear. It amuses yet saddens her at the same time. It makes her smile yet frown. Smile because of the Islamophobe's failed attempt to conceal his strong fear of Islam, but frown because he is one of those who have possibly had their hearts shield and eyes covered forever from the Truth by God.Oh Islamophobe, you will never win. You will never win.

“They intend to put out the Light of Allaah (i.e. the religion of Islam, this Qur’aan, and Prophet Muhammad) with their mouths. But Allah will bring His Light to perfection even though the disbelieves hate (it).” (Al-Qur'an, Surah al-Saff Ayah 8)

Looking for the perfect Eid Abyaat?

I love these two from SunnahStyle.com. Sunnahstyle is a company I trust the quality and shipping from myself here in Canada.


Monday, August 10, 2009

ILH: Wild and Striking Designer Jalibiyia

The two S's we love Summer and Sale =I ♥ Hishma has decided to make it easy on you. Anywhere in the world you may shop our Summer Sale, and that's not all folks... shipping is FREE of charge! Just comment or email us with your item num. (on the facebook page not this blog post) and we will give you all the necessary info needed for your shopping spree...Hurry. Impre$$ 4 Le$$ :D

Jalibiyia/special-occasion Jilbab available at I ♥ Hishma locations in KSA, and through the facebook group (D, I am still waiting on the online store addy:D). I love purple! For those interested, please make sure you add us to your facebook: I ♥ Hishma.

(1% of sales gos to Say NO to Violence against Women http://www.unifem.org/campaigns/vaw/ )

ILH: The time has come to ROCK tradition!

Press

Yay! I ♥ Hishma Brand Stores featured in Rotana magazine. Alhamdulilah.

Just Because It Is Khaleeji...

Okay, just because they call it "Khaleeji" or "Dubai Designer" doesn't stop it from being the ugly or unislamic piece of costume madness that it is. I am talking about the ugly abaya. The one on top, looks like a curtain.
This one, not so bad, but instead of having just the feather, they put an image on it, and we aren't supposed to wear images (thanks Jamilah!).
See-through and tha pose while covering the face? Lame.
The print reminds me of gay guys with big belt buckles, but it wouldn't have been half bad without that marabou trimmed purse in the matchy-match.
Okay, to me this abaya is fine---but the matching purse and those shoes just take the outfit down down down. I blame the stylist.
Remember. Dubai doesn't alway = designer:p

Yellow Sleeve on Khaleeji Abaya

I am just loving that BANG of yellow on the sleeve.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Response to Organica's "Niqab: Is it Veiling the True Message of Islam" Post

Someone asked me about my thoughts on Organica's post: "Niqab: Is it Veiling the True Message of Islam" Organica's . I didn't have time to write a response but Nida http://theidealmuslimah.blogspot.com/ did, and her's says everything I would have said anyway. The only thing I would add is this hadith to give glad tidings to all my Muslim sisters practicing hijab: be it khimar, jilbab, and or niqab... On the authority of Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Islam began as something strange and will return as something strange as it began, so give glad tidings to the strangers." The rest was said best by Nida. So I am re-posting Nida's response to Organica's post:

Never will the Jews or the Christians be satisfied with thee unless thou follow their form of religion. Say: "The Guidance of God,-that is the (only) Guidance." Wert thou to follow their desires after the knowledge which hath reached thee, then wouldst thou find neither Protector nor helper against God. (Qur'an, Surah Al-Baqarah 2:120)
This is My Response to Organica's Post Titled: "Niqab: Is it Veiling the True Message of Islam?"

It seems, from what I have gathered - that your main concern and focal question in this post is "for what good? And for what benefit?" You [Organica] proclaim your understanding of the reasons as to why sisters wear the Niqaab and for what purpose, yet you really do NOT! I am sorry! Normally, I do not take the time to respond to such claims, but when it is coming from another muslim, it is quite troubling, and I believe it should be addressed.

If your main concern is with the criticism the image of the niqaab generates within the west, then we shouldn't be practicing Muslims in the first place - since Islam itself generates criticism within this part of the world. Anything Islamic raises eyebrows. Discrimination against Islam is nothing new, nor is islamophobia. It existed ever since the advent and spread of Islam, be it in the form of European Orientalism, or blunt, misinformed and offensive remarks by the general ignorant peoples of the West.

At one point, during the middle ages, the orientalists called us Muslims - "Muhammadans" - therefore generating general stereotypes and bad images of Muslims through the use of vulgar propaganda about our prophet (upon whom may be peace). Should we have then stopped following the sunnah of our prophet and left Islam just because of such baseless claims about our prophet? The early Islamic generations were not as weak, as we are today. They did not let those stereotypes reconsider their faith in Allah subhanu wa ta'ala nor the teachings of our prophet peace be upon him. So you ask "for what good?" They did so for the good of Islam - for the good of the Muslim Ummah!

Today's sisters who are strong enough to observe the niqab, despite the false stereotypes created in the media and general public about them are the carriers of our deen. They do it for Allah subhanu wa ta'ala first and foremost, and they do it for the Ummah. Why should they appease those false stereotypes? Why should they become apologetic for the wrong that has been done onto them? Why should Muslims keep apologizing for the wrong images that are being created about them? It is like rubbing salt onto an already open wound.

I believe that Muslims can perfectly integrate into Western society. Islam is nothing new in the West! It has been here and continues its integration process since the eleventh century. Today's popular thesis about the inevitable "clash of civilizations" is arguably very flawed. If it wasn't for Islam, the West would have never seen the light of the reformation period and sprung into enlightenment. Islam existed within the west for centuries. So how can we claim that Islam is completely unfathomable in the West?I concur, it is very difficult for a Muslim to practice his or her faith in it's purity within a modern Western environment, however it is a struggle, and not impossible. Sisters in niqab are a perfect example of that.

I believe that Niqab, or at the very least hijab, in the West is even more necessary then in Arab/Muslim countries. Hijab/Niqab is a form of identity. It is a Muslimah's uniform. It is something by which we are recognized as Muslims in the West - and this is very important knowing how much the prophet peace be upon him stressed for us to be differentiated from the non-Muslims. Al-Tirmidhi reported that the Messenger of Allah salallahu alleyhi wa salam said: "He is not one of us who imitates people other than us. Do not imitate the Jews and Christians." According to another narration he said, "Whoever imitates a people is one of them." (Reported by Imaam Ahmad)

Furthermore, it is a form of struggle/jihad for the muslim women themselves. It is a constant reminder of one's Islamic identity; therefore one constantly strives to please Allah subhanu wa ta'ala and tries to refrain from doing evil.- you say for what good? For the good of bettering oneself, and her relationship with the All Mighty.

So Muslimahs do it for the benefit of their Creator, themselves, their faith, and their community.

Again, I have to ask, why should it be their fault that this kid got scared, when his/her mother did not explain Islam well enough to him/her. If niqab itself was that scary, then all Muslim children should be suffering from shock syndrome, since their mothers are under the veil almost 24/7! I say all of this niqaab phobia business is a bunch of loaded uncouth propaganda!
Peace!

BY NIDA http://theidealmuslimah.blogspot.com/2009/07/my-response-to-organicas-post-niqab-is.html

And since Organica disabled comments on her blog post I wanted to respond to this commentator. Nadia wrote: I totally agree with you on every tiny thing you said [and Organica said that the issue was dawah and Islam in the West in her post---not the Gulf]. I rarely see Niqab in Canada but when I do, I usually feel ashamed, because people look at these women and think 'Fundamentalist'. A girl in long jeans and a long shirt with a bright hijab on who holds open the door for you and smiles is the friendlier true face of Islam. Most women who wear niqab don't have a choice. In most cases, especially here in the Middle East, it's not about religion or connection to Allah, it's more about family and culture. One of my best friends grew up without Niqab, studied in the UK (with her Hijab), came back to the Middle East, and got a job as a university lecturer. A modest, quiet, intelligent girl. She got married a couple of years later to an educated intelligent man, and despite all his promises to her before the wedding, he immediately forced her to wear Niqab because he didn't want other men to see her face, and he forced her to stop work. I've seen this scenario so many times! Is it religion or jealousy?

My response.... Nadia: you said that niqab shouldn't be worn in the west, right, but then you bring up cultural issues of Muslim women being forced to wear it by their husbands in the Gulf, which is a different subject entirely than the woman that wants to wear it as part of her religion IN THE WEST, which is what Organica acknowledged. No offense, but any woman stupid enough to do something NOT based in her religion by her husband is a weak idiot. I won't let anyone force me to do, or NOT to anything I don't believe in. I want to wear niqab in the West for my Creator. My husband doesn't want me to wear it [he thinks it is mustahaab but that means wearing it where there is less struggle to hom], I am not being forced, and in my experience, because I have time for people, I get to give people alot of dawah about my niqab and other islamic issues. I have gotten it down to one minute, explaining fiqh, hijab, obedience to Allah. I have seen ignorant men that just wanted to scream at me stop that and thank me for teaching them that I want to be valued solely for my actions in society, not my ability to charm by beauty of facial dexterity. Don't be a weak idiot and let a man run your life. That is your own fault if you won't live according to the sunnah and your conivctions rather than the culture. Sure the guy is to blame too, but the woman is in a way more to blame. That is not what a Muslim woman does. She lives by her beliefs and convictions, not her own desires, but certainly by her own convictions. I think it is great tragedy when anyone is forced to wear ANYTHING against their beliefs. I would stand up for your "friend's" right not to wear niqab, but I expect you not to label me as fundamentalist because I want to wear something the Prophet's wives and some of the best women of the Sahaba DID. Of my own convictions. Of my own beliefs. Giving my own dawah. Which is more than I ever did in the West in just a headscarf.

ADD ON:
Organica, I just had to reply to this comment you made: "Muslims focus too much these days on the appearances. So what if someone lost the beard for the sake of telling people about Allah? That is better in my book than sporting the beard, short thobe and praying 5 times a day at mosque. My dear sister, you must understand your purpose on this earth. You aren't here to just cover and be happy. You are here to worship Allah and call people to worship Him."

My response is that indeed, our only purpose in this life is to worship Allah subhanhu wa ta'ala (tauhid). Salat, niqab, beards, thobes, can be part of these things. We ARE sent to warn others, but that is not as important to Allah subhanhu wa ta ala as our own perfected obedience and worship. It is said that there will be Prophets who had many followers, and prophets without a SINGLE follower on the day of judgement, and these shall be admitted to the highest seat in Jannah. Obviously the dawah is not as important as the worshipping and obedience. What are we calling people to then, if we can pick and choose of the sunnah what we wish? A beard was a command unto men from the Prophet sallalahu alahi wa salaam. Are brothers to shave theirs to get converts? If they do, what have they just taught those converts? Discard Allah's commands and what the Messenger has given you AS you will.

While I love the dawah oppurtunities my niqab affords me, I know that my personal understanding and practice of Islam comes before trying to make a good impression on others. On the day of judgement, they won't be standing with me, and I won't be measured by if they started to walk the same path I do or not. My own footsteps will spell out what has been writ for me.

For Najah: : [in disagreements between husband and wife] "...and take mutual counsel together, according to what is just and reasonable." (65:6)

“Those who hearken to their Lord, and establish regular Prayer; who (conduct) their affairs by mutual Consultation; who spend out of what We bestow on them for Sustenance;” (42:38)

So as you will see, the words "mutual counsel" are used MORE than once to emphasise that the woman's thoughts and wishes are also important (her husband's do not override her's unless the matters are in the religion) and if they are not the not, the Qu'ran asks both the husband and wife to do what is just and resonable. If the man's commands are unfathomable, or the wife's, or go against the rights of the other in the religion, they are not to be blindly obeyed. This of course is not an excuse to blindly use for trouble-making.