Lo and behold! A fatwa has been passed by His Holiness Sheikh Abdullah that a man chatting with a woman is HARAAM! Given the fact that this comes from a “senior scholar”, his opinion must be right. I mean, surely you weren’t thinking of using your brains for once? BECAUSE THAT IS HARAAM TOO! After all, these folks dedicate their lives to spread the word of Allah and His messenger! We must listen and obey.
Except, maybe not!
What’s rather ironic is that this mainstream thought is exactly what the Quran challenges. Reasoning for yourselves is advocated in numerous verses, and blindly following the customs of your forefathers and the opinions of scholars, discouraged.
Now, when it comes to matters on modesty, we have an excellent example in Yousuf (salutes and respect to him). He was sexually approached by the lady of the house in which he was brought up in, but being the man of character that he was, he immediately sought refuge with God and resisted that weak moment (12:23). He didn’t try to “justify” the situation; he simply refused and walked away. This unapologetic and sincere devotion to God’s commandments on morality is what demonstrates true faith!And, by the way, God does not seek to alienate men and women. After all, the peaceful men and the peaceful women are ALLIES of one another who enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong (9:71)
Therefore, the problem I have with these short-sighted superficial attempts at maintaining cordial relationships between men and women is that they fail to look at the bigger picture, which of course is the battle of de-objectifying women as sexual objects and treating them with dignity and respect.
Alienating men and women is not the solution; rather it fuels the problem it’s supposed to solve. In the society I live in, there is no free mixing of unrelated men and women, and no co-education, except for the elites. This does not make men more “moral”. Quite the opposite! You need only go out in a public space, and observe the heinous stares at women! Absolutely loathful! I believe this is so, because there remains a sense of wonder and unfamiliarity. To some extent, dialogue overcomes this. Exposure does wonders!
This is what all of us need to be focusing on, especially the influential people who have a huge fan following. For once, please make use of your popularity for something good and worthwhile!
This is my fatwa, and you better adhere to it!
Now, if you’d excuse me, I have to pitch this blog to some of my female editor friends!
Oh, so evil.