Islam teaches us about how we should respect its rules and the rights of all Muslims; male and female. But what about the specific rights of women in Islam? It’s the Islamic law’s way of honoring women
So, how does Islam honor women?
Islam honors women by giving them their rights. Islam came to change the status of women in the pre-Islamic era. It necessitates every Muslim to follow these rules and respect the rights of women or they’ll be sinners.
Keep reading to know more about women’s rights in Islam list and evidence.
Women in Islamic History
Women in Islamic society have not only shaped the course of Islam but also of Muslim lives up to the present day. We owe it to their inspiring legacy to create powerful spaces for women’s participation in the growth and understanding of religion.
Ideals of selflessness, love, confidence, dedication, and intelligence are underlying concepts in all of these women’s lives. Here are some examples of some of Islamic history’s most influential women:
Khadija bint Khuwaylid
Khadija bint Khuwaylid was the Prophet Muhammad’s (Peace Be Upon Him) first wife, and she remains one of the most influential and inspirational personalities in Islamic history. She is known as the “Mother of Believers” because she practically single-handedly funded and supported the Prophet and Islam in its early days.
Fatima bint Muhammad
Fatima, the Prophet Muhammad’s and his wife Khadija’s daughter, was believed to be intelligent and was taught by the Prophet himself about the truth and philosophy of Islam. Despite seeing some of the most challenging days of early Islam, her faith and loyalty to Allah remained surprisingly strong.
She had a special position in Islam. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) used to say:
“Whoever injures Fatima, he injures me; and whoever injures me injures Allah; and whoever injures Allah practices unbelief. O, Fatima! If your wrath is incurred, it incurs the wrath of Allah; and if you are pleased, it makes Allah pleased too”
Zainab bint Ali
Zainab, the Prophet’s granddaughter, is also one of the most powerful people in Islamic history. Despite living through chaotic inter-fighting and the terrible Battle of Karbala, Zainab continues to inspire millions with her brave dedication to both her family and her faith.
During her legendary lecture in Yazid’s court, Zainab stood boldly against oppression and injustice, urging the tyrant to fear Allah SWT and await his retribution.
Taken prisoner following the deaths of her beloved family members, Zainab stayed loyal in her religion and continued to assist promote the pure faith and devotion that her grandpa, the Prophet Muhammad, had preached.
Her story continues to encourage millions of Muslims today to make a stand against oppression and injustice, no matter what the cost.
Aisha bint Abu Bakr
After the death of Khadija, Aisha became one of the Prophet’s wives and is credited with reporting approximately 2,000 hadith, or the Prophet Muhammad’s sayings and deeds.
Aisha is also said to have taught at several schools and was recognized by some to have a broad range of knowledge. Aisha was the daughter of Abu Bakr, one of the Prophet’s closest friends, and was strongly affected by her father’s position in the early days of Islam.
Many Muslims still observe many of the hadith that Aisha herself transmitted on both the Prophet’s personal life and his sunnah, as well as other religious topics such as inheritance laws, good deeds, pilgrimage, and much more.
Sumayyah bint al-Khayyat
Sumayyah bint al-Khayyat, known as the first martyr of Islam, was one of the first to publicly defy the Quraysh authorities of the period and was murdered for her commitment to Allah SWT and His Deen.
Sumayyah is remembered as one of the saddest and yet inspiring examples of powerful women in Islamic history. Despite the fear of torture and death, Sumayyah refused to submit in the face of oppression and injustice.
Sumayyah’s legacy and commitment continue to impact the hearts and lives of Muslims today, despite the fact that it cost her her life.
The Condition of Women Before Islam
Given that the pagan Arabs used to bury their female children alive, make women dance naked in the area of the Kaaba at their yearly fairs, and regard women as simple possessions and objects of sexual pleasure with no rights or position, Islam came to permanently alter the status of women.
During the pre-Islamic era, there was a lot of discrimination against women. Women did not have a right to divorce their husbands. They were not guaranteed any women’s right to inherit; nevertheless, these rights were provided following the introduction of Islam.
While lower-class women in pre-Islamic Arabia did not have many rights, upper-class women had. Many of them became ‘naditum,’ or priestesses, which gave them even greater power. These ladies may possess and inherit property. Furthermore, the naditum were able to participate actively in the economic life of their society.
Islam came to treat all women the same. The same rules apply to the lower and upper classes the same. It came to guarantee that they’re treated as human beings, not possessions. It gave them the respect and dignity they needed.
Gender Equality in Islam
According to Shari’ah, women are spiritual and intellectual equals to men. The major distinction it makes between them is in the physical sphere, which is based on the appropriate idea of equitable work allocation.
The Quran also highlights a man’s and his wife’s oneness and equality.
“They are a garment (i.e. vestment, mutual protection) for you, and you are a garment for them.”
Unlike other religions and beliefs, which believe that women have inherent vice and immorality while men have inherent virtue and majesty, Islam believes that men and women are of the same essence, created from a single soul.
“O mankind, fear your Lord, who created you from one soul and created from it its mate and dispersed from both of them many men and women. And fear Allah, through whom you ask one another, and the wombs. Indeed Allah is ever, over you, an Observer.”
It is important to note that the preceding ayah is from Surah An-Nisaa, which translates to ‘women’s chapter,’ emphasizing how the Quran took care to include a chapter titled for women, discussing their rights and status in Islam.
In Islam, a woman is considered self-sufficient. She has the legal ability to enter into any transaction or make any bequest in her own name. She has the right to take on the roles of mother, wife, sister, and daughter.
She has total freedom in selecting her husband. In contrast to the pre-Islamic Arabian pagan society, which had an irrational antipathy to its female infants, whom they used to bury alive.
How Does Islam Protect the Rights of Women?
Islam is unjustly accused of being a religion that does not value the rights of women. In reality, many Muslim scholars have responded to this charge, based primarily on the legal passages of the Quran, Muslims’ primary source of regulation, and the Sunnah, their second source.
Women Education in Islam
The Quran constantly invites Muslims to study, reflect, meditate, and learn from Allah’s signs in nature, regardless of biological gender.
“And those who strive in Our (cause), – We will certainly guide them to our Paths: For verily Allah is with those who do right”
(Surah Al Ankabut)
Furthermore, Sunnah stated or demonstrated instances both encourage men and women’s equal rights to pursue knowledge. According to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH):
“Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave”
The fact that Prophet Muhammad used to educate both men and women demonstrates his interest in female education. Both men and women sought out Prophet Muhammad’s teachings.
Early Muslim women learned how to memorize the Quran and Quran Tajweed principles in order to correctly recite the Quran and apply it in their lives as Muslims and moms. Furthermore, it was said that around the time of Muhammad’s death, there were numerous female Islamic academics.
Women’s Rights in Islamic Marriage
Taking marriage as an example, Islam states unequivocally that marriage is a strong bond between the husband and wife; it offers tranquility, tenderness, and mercy for both, which is why it should be founded on mutual love, tolerance, and respect.
It allows both sides of the marriage the right to pick their counterpart. It directs the husband to respect his wife by giving her a dowry (a gift) before the marriage contract.
It also requires the woman’s wali (guardian) to conduct her marital relations on her behalf due to his extensive and long experience interacting with and contacting males and therefore knowing everything there is to know about them.
It also states that a woman is not responsible for any financial problems inside the family, but that it is the husband’s responsibility to provide a proper dwelling for her as well as all the necessities and requirements essential for the continuity of this family, such as food, drink, clothes, and so on.
Women’s Rights to Work
From the beginning, Islam did not forbid women from working and did not even make it mandatory for women to stay at home and serve the family. Before and after the revelation of Islam, Prophet Muhammad’s wife Khadija (May Allah Be Pleased With Her) was a well-known trader.
In the start, women were also employed as Islamic teachers. The Prophet Muhammad’s wives and daughters were the first to communicate his words and make attempts to clarify Islamic teachings to other women.
How Prophet Muhammad Honored Women
Through His Relationship with His Wives
Throughout his life, Prophet Muhammad PBUH treated his wives the way they should be treated. They were gratified by his presence, tenderness, affection and the love he provided to them was second to none.
He also treated them with justice. When he was sick before he died, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) asked his companions to carry him to all his wives’ houses to ask them to spend the night in Aisha’s house even though he was too sick to move.
His Encouragement for Women to Take Social Roles
Muslim women had major responsibilities throughout the Prophet Muhammad’s lifetime (PBUH). He never mentioned how they should just stay at home and look after the kids.
His wife, Aisha (May Allah Be Pleased With Her), was a scholar who used to openly express herself in public. She also commended the women of Ansar for not allowing their shyness to prevent them from learning about Islam and asking questions about it.
He Listened and Cared about Women in His Society
The Prophet s.a.w. elevated the status of women from that of property to that of equal standing in society with rights and respect. The Prophet (PBUH) devoted special attention to women in his community, who were previously denied any rights, independence, or space.
He was always patient and compassionate to them, and he listened to their plight.
He Was Never Shy to Show Love for His Daughters
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was never afraid to express his profound affection for his daughter, Fatima (May Allah Be Pleased With Her) He would stand up for her, kiss her, grab her hand, and make her sit in his place whenever she entered the room.