Beyond the Hijab
Today, it is easier to see Muslim women and girls in Nigeria adorning their hijabs in different designs, colours and length. The loudening is pitched with a yearly celebration of the Hijab day- a day to sensitize girls towards the necessity of the Hijab as part of their dressing. Until very recent, our women were traditionally covered in Hijabs that are culture-based. The consciousness to adorn the hijab is no doubt, a good effort, as this is a command from Allah that hitherto, many were not heeding. “O Prophet, tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them (when they go abroad). That will be better….” (Quran 33:59). But beyond the hijab, Islamic Clerics, groups and Individual Muslims, need to raise the Islamic consciousness of our women and girls. Some of them are bereft of basic knowledge of Islam, which can make them averagely good Muslims. Many, cannot, do ablution, memorize and recite the last ten short chapters of the Qur’an, cannot observe the Salat, accurately, understand how to do basic Ghusul needed to be clean. (The ghusl after menstruation is a tall order for many). This may sound repugnant and absurd, but ask the next woman or girl beside you, the reality will come to you as daylight. Some married Muslim women are also no exception. Allah, admonish: …But the raiment of righteousness that is the best. Such are among the Signs of Allah, that they may receive admonition.” (Quran 7:26)
We Need to Know
Islam is a religion that celebrates seeking knowledge as a virtue. Al-Imam Al-Ghazali in his book Minhaj Ul-‘Abideen, tells us that in order for us to perform our acts of worship and to be safe from error, we must first know God before worshipping Him. But Muslims of today are not mindful of this. We are too lackadaisical towards the practice of Islam, about the basic principles and guidelines of Islam, thus are neglectful and committing errors. Sadly, our Imams assume we know but in reality, many do not know and do not strive to know. During different prayers (salaat), the five compulsory prayers or Nawafil of all kinds, we see Muslims standing in prayers, praying with their hands at their sides (sadl), or clasping the hands (qabd). Really, majorities want to fold hands (qabd) without understanding the appropriate manner, (putting the right hand over the left on the chest) thus, doing it far away from the recommended mode. Imagine the various postures in this picture, one wonder, where Muslims get these various postures from? Or who taught them these? Certainly, they just assumed folding is folding regardless of how it is done. This is where lack of knowledge about religion has put us. The generations of today’s Muslims are in the dark, thinking they are in the light. Many now follow a way other than that of the Prophet or ways in the books of fiqh of the four madhhabs; thus many are still far away in basic knowledge.
The ferocious attacks on the personality of the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy of the Federal Government of Nigeria, Malam Isa Pantami is rather unfortunate and uncalled for. One continues to wonder why some Nigerians pastime is pulling him Down syndrome. And what pecuniary gains are there for them attacking Nigerian greats, except one can only think they are sadist and vampires, whose happiness lie in destroying others. The scripts started with reference to his past comment as if there were no worse comments from other Nigerians. Akin to his present hounding is the ‘Islamilization’ toga put on President Muhammadu Buhari, by his haters’ years ago. Ironically, Pantami’s present travails are also coming from haters whose morbid hatred for Islam and Muslims is second to none. These haters will often chastise anyone that professes Islam openly like him. His own is more audacious because of his sterling Islamic scholarship and brilliance in thoughts and actions in the Ministry. His predecessor Dr Adebayo Shittu, was almost forced out of office over a non-issue. Their true intent is to attack Islam and Muslims. Sadly, this time they picked the wrong personality. Imagine them, alleging he orchestrated and planned the helicopter crash, that killed Patrick Yakowa, and invited Islamic Media to cover official events in the Ministry as if that is his job, supports terrorism, whereas the same (Boko Haram), declared him wanted for his utterances and actions that made their evil actions miserable. He will triumph. The truth shall prevail as Allah promised, ‘they plot to extinguish the light of Allah, but their plot is void’.
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