Saturday, November 6, 2010

Black is Beautiful

Many people still mistakenly imagine Muslim women in shapeless black tents, uneducated, conservative, oppressed and forever in ignorance.

What an Awful Misconception!

Sure, there are still women like that in some parts of the world. Some are victims of unislamic culture, where women are not given their rightful place of honour in society.

Maybe they are poverty stricken due to war and natural disasters. They may not have educational opportunities and they may not have a voice of their own.

Ignorant and chauvinistic men may try to perpetuate their power over the women in their societies. These men are actually backward and ignorant of the wisdom, fairness and beauty of Islam.

Double Standards

When someone wears a black, tight and revealing outfit, people say its cool, elegant and fabulous. When a Muslima wears a black abaya (long overcoat or gown), even some fellow Muslims say wearing black is backward, depressing and conservative. That is a little unkind.

Too Much Bling Bling blinds Us

Though it is fashionable these days for some Muslima to wear black abayas, it was mainly a cultural practice in certain parts of Arabia. Some garments these days are actually extremely expensive.(Think bling bling from Dubai) Actually all that excessive glitter and bling would make these garments a little unsuitable for Muslima to wear outside the home. Simply too flashy for the public eye, my dears! All eyes will be riveted in your direction. Is that what you really want?

Ready for Abaya!

No one forced anyone to buy black. No one said its more holy to wear black. No one said we must only wear abaya! It took me a very long time to grow to love and accept the black abaya. I did not understand the rationale behind wearing a black abaya. Actually white or light coloured abayas are really nice but they are not so practical.

Now I realise its such a versatile garment- modest, easy fit, conceals all the curves of the body and it covers our beautiful attractive clothes which we use in privacy. Only dark fabrics are opaque. White may be a little transparent.

Quality abayas are now available in many beautiful textures,in dark and neutral shades and even combined with beautiful brocades and silks. They are tastefully styled and well made. That revolution took many years! I'm ready for abaya now!

Help Each Other to Please Allah SWT

People who wear clothes that reveal their figures and skin have actually disobeyed the Islamic dress code. However, it takes time for people to understand and to have the courage to change their lifestyle. Share knowledge and encourage. Many of us were like them too - so ignorant and wasted so much valuable time, with no real direction.

When we want to help someone, be gentle and be patient. Do not judge. And some men should remember they have daughters and grandchildren who may grow up to be even worse that the ones they criticize. It would be wiser for some critics to go home to guide their own families first. That is better for them.

Who are the Women in Black?

They are from diverse backgrounds. Doctors, lawyers, teachers, businesswomen, wives and mothers. They too love attractive clothes and bright colours but they make constant effort to check themselves for the sake of Allah SWT.

What is their Yardstick?

Their yardstick is to ask themselves whether their actions would please Allah SWT. They ask themselves whether their behaviour is according to the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad saw.
These are truly beautiful women who carry themselves well, enjoying a moderate lifestyle.

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