It is time to reflect on our gender roles
Today marks the 9th day of Dhul Hijjah the 12th and last month of the Islamic year. This day is known as the day of Arafat and perhaps one of the most significant days in Islam. It was on this day that prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) delivered his last sermon known as “Khutbatul Widaa” in the Uraanah valley on mount Arafat. His words were clear and directed to the entire humanity to reflect on gender roles.
One of the catching paragraphs in this sermon was one on fairness and kind treatment of women he said “O people, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to your women, but they also have rights over you. Remember that you have taken them as your wives only under Allah’s trust and with his permission if they abide by your right then to them belongs the right to be fed, and clothed in kindness. Do treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers and it’s your right that they do not make friends with any one of whom you do not approve as well as never to be unchaste.”
The statement on women appearing in the last public sermon of the prophet is evidence of Islamic gender sensitivity. This was indeed a very strong statement and should form a basis for addressing domestic violence in our communities.
-Mwasa Kasim Ahmed, Research Advocacy and Information Officer MCJL