Views from Srinagar
Muhammad Suhail Haafiz Cheentsaaz
HERE is a common question asked by non-Muslims ‘why only women are forced to cover and veil? Before we go to answer we must understand some natural facts so that we can understand the subject in a broader perspective.
It is a universal fact that every creature doesn’t hold the same status. As human beings are supreme to all, so no one can equate them with animals.
In the same fashion, all the creatures have been categorized by nature itself. Even the duties and mental approach of them differ according to gender.
This is an absolute truth, none can deny. Women have been given a different type of physical and psychological system from men. The biological and scientific researches reveal the fact that women have entirely different structure ranging from body formation to the cells and particles of body. A mother has to suckle her baby and nourish. It requires full time attention, because of these natural and physical reasons a woman is not able to discharge her duties like earning livelihood, supporting family, working hard, govern a country, fighting in the battlefield and deal with the challenges of the world.
It is unjust on her part to put these duties on her weak shoulders. Biologically women are to bear a child and nurse. Their advancement is to make their biological nature grow not to suppress it and turn to an opposite direction. Therefore, Islam has drawn a different framework for both man and woman. The women have full freedom to excel in their field. The duty of nursing a child and management of the house is of greater value than to earn money. Even Antom Nimlov, a renowned communist scientist of Soviet Union admits this fact and writes in his book “The Biological Tragedy of Women”:
“Biologically men and women are not equal and they were not put equal burdens.” The West considers the society a group of individuals free to indulge in any activity that involves them personally. On the contrary, Islam considers all society a unit. It does not allow an individual to carry out such an action that damages the social structure though it is confined apparently to his/her personality. Islam believes that a human civilization can survive only when the society is clean, pious, systematic, and responsible. The success of the society lies in its spiritual development. Free sexual relation, uncontrolled carnal desires, shamelessness and nudity is disastrous for society.
It will push it to a horrible end. Even some western writers have admitted that the family system is a must for any flourishing society. The last president of Soviet Union Michael Gorbachov says in his book “Prostraika” chapter “status of women”: “Our family system has been destroyed. It will put an end to our nation. The disadvantages of women emancipation are more than its advantages” So Islam has put certain restrictions and regulations in order to protect the honor of a woman.
Let us look at it from scientific angle. Human nervous system is the divinely made computer with over 100 billion neurons. These neurons are like highly sophisticated microchips and scientists have failed so far to calculate exact storage capacity and processing speed of even a single neuron. The most striking point is that over 80% of all the sensory information that goes into the human brain comes from eyes only. A major task of neurons is to store and process all the information in appropriate areas of brain and make it ready for accurate and timely retrieval in future.
Finally, the output which is seen in the form of words, behaviour, and physical actions, is dependent on the input. Thus, if wrong or incorrect sensory stimuli enter into brain, the neurons will be storing and processing that information, leading to bad ideas, thoughts and finally bad words and actions. In today’s world, the sensory information mostly enters eyes via special environmental scenes at parties, in universities, at gatherings, interaction of males and females at work place and in other situations, and exposure to media, cinema etc, pictures, magazines, TV and computer screen, IPod and mobile phone screen, and other such gadgets.
Unless a person blocks the unwanted information from going into his brain by controlling his eyes and where he looks, or selectively deciding not to expose oneself to a specific environment, the information cannot be prevented from entering brain.
So before we comment on the status of women or the significance of hijab in the modern world, we must not ignore all these facts which merit a detailed discussion.
[Writer is Asstt: SG Muninipal Cop. Srinagar]