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Reviving our Sense of Gheera

We live in societies in which most men and women have lost their sense of modesty, women are obsessed with their appearances and wear clothes to be seen by others and to attract the attention of other men even if they are married! They have lost their sense of shame. Marriage is often looked upon as old-fashioned and short term affairs and frivolous relationships are the norm, everyone waiting to attract a better partner and feeling totally justified to dump one partner for another at the drop of a hat. Feminism too has reached its peak and men and women are told to suppress their natural emotions. Men are not even embarrassed when their wives are dressed up and attract the attention of other men, they don’t mind if another man sees, chats, laughs and even dances with their womenfolk and if they do mind, they are told not to be so possessive!

In Islam we have a concept of gheerah. Gheerah is an Arabic word which means protectiveness or jealousy. It is a good type of jealousy, like when a man feels jealous or protective over his wife or sisters and other-womenfolk and doesn’t like other men to look at them. It is a natural inbuilt feeling Allah has given men and women. The Prophet (peace be upon him) had the most gheerah for his wives and all of the companions were known for their gheerah. All Muslim men should have a collective sense of protectiveness for Muslim women as Allah says in the Qur’an, the meaning of which is:

“The Men are the protectors and maintainers of women…”  [1]

Men who do not care about how their women behave and appear in front of other men and don’t enforce hijaab upon their wives or women-folk are called dayyooth. Being a dayyooth is a major sin and a detailed description of this evil characteristic can be found in al-Dhahabi’s Book of Major Sins.

A story of Gheerah

To further understand the quality of gheerah, we can look at an incident that Asmaa’ (may Allah be pleased with her) the daughter of Abu Bakr al-Siddiq (may Allah be pleased with him) and sister of Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her), relates about herself. Abu Bakr was a wealthy merchant and married his daughter Asmaa’ to the great companion Az-Zubayr ibn al-‘Awwam (may Allah be pleased with him) who was a very poor man but a man of great piety and one of the companions who were promised Paradise. Asmaa’ relates:

“When az-Zubayr married me, he had neither land nor wealth nor slave…” so Asmaa’ had to work very hard kneading dough, going far off to get water. “And I used to carry on my head,” she continues, “the date stones from the land of az-Zubair which Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) had endowed him and it was a distance of two miles from Madinah. One day, as I was carrying the date-stones upon my head, I happened to meet Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him), along with a group of his Companions. He called me and told the camel to sit down so that he could make me ride behind him. I felt shy to go with men and I remembered az-Zubair and his gheerah and he was a man having the most gheerah. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) understood my shyness and left. I came to az-Zubair and said: “The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) met me as I was carrying date-stones upon my head and there was with him a group of his Companions. He told the camel to kneel so that I could mount it, but I felt shy and I remembered your gheerah.” So Asmaa’ declined the offer made by the Prophet (peace be upon him). Upon this az-Zubair said: “By Allah, the thought of you carrying date-stones upon your head is more severe a burden on me than you riding with him.”[2] 

Look at the sense of dignity and modesty of Asmaa’! See how she felt shy in front of men? See how careful she was about her husband’s feelings? She knew that her husband had a lot of gheerah so she didn’t want to upset him by accepting the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) help even though the Prophet was the purest of men and even though it meant bringing hardship on herself! And look at az-Zubair (may Allah be pleased with him), even though he had a lot of gheerah, he didn’t want to inconvenience his wife. What a beautiful relationship they had!

Nurturing our sense of Gheerah

Sometimes Muslim women don’t understand if their menfolk want them to cover their faces or if they ask them to change something about the way they dress or speak in public, thinking that the men are being over-protective. But my dear sisters! If your husband asks you not to wear a certain colour of khimar because it brings out the beauty of your eyes or if he wants you to cover your face – be thankful! Be proud of the fact that your husband has a sense of gheerah for you and that he values you and cares for your hereafter. He knows what men can be like more than you do and so never try and suppress his gheerah in these types of matters. And his concern for you should incite your own sense of honour! Why should any man be able to see your beauty and think indecent thoughts about you? We must nurture our own and our menfolk’s sense of gheerah by behaving and dressing modestly ourselves and paying attention to their valid opinions. We expect certain behaviour from them and they expect it of us. And besides, if our husband asks us to do something that it not haram, we must do it.

Brothers! How can you allow your wife or sister to walk around attracting the attentions and evil-thoughts of other men? How can you not mind if she smiles as she talks to other men. Nobody has the right to enjoy her and her company but you and her Maharim men. You are not being overbearing if you first encourage and then enforce the hijab on your womenfolk because YOU will be asked about it on the Day of Judgement and it is also a major sin upon you! It is upon the men to enforce these things in their homes and you cannot use the excuse that your wife didn’t want to. Women need a firm, balanced, guiding hand from their men, so with wisdom you must enforce hijab in your home. You are a shepherd and are responsible for your flock!

Allah reminds us all in the Qur’an, the meaning of which is:

“O you who believe, Protect yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones.”[3] 

There is a big difference between how Islam values and protects women and how cheaply women are treated outside of Islam. As Muslims we have to be careful that our sense of modesty, shame and gheerah don’t wear out in a society in which people have lost it.


Notes: 
Islam21c requests all the readers of this article, and others, to share it on your facebooktwitter, and other platforms to further spread our efforts.
[1] Surah al-Nisaa, verse 34
[2] Al-Bukhari
[3] Surah al-Tahreem, verse 6

About Ahmed Ali

40 comments

  1. Wonderful article, MashaAllah
    Please have more articles like this one.

  2. mis-direction of Asma’s Hadeeth
    Please can someone comment of the fact that a non-mahram offered Asma (R.A) a ride but she refused but the husband said that he had rather she taken that help, although this would go totally against all salafi teachings of not even letting your voice be heard let alone being able to talk to someone. And can someone tell me why was’nt she wearing a nikab if it is farz and being a pious women she would have been wearing one, but ofcourse it shows she was’nt and thats how she was recognised….opens up a whole different argument against nikab. Nowadays you can’t even say salam to someone in nikab without the threat of being accused of promiscuity.

  3. lol_ott_modesty

    .
    its funny how salafis talk most about modesty yet are always involved in sex scandals and massive divorce rates….even though they have long beards, abayah etc

  4. Fatima Barkatulla

    Note from the author
    Assalamu Alaikum Dear Brothers and Sisters.

    I do hope you are all well. I noticed this article (which I originally authored) was posted here on the Islam21C website recently by the admin team of the website and I wish to make a few clarifications.

    This article was originally written about 10 years ago for a Muslim magazine: Al-Jumuah Magazine. The essential message of the article still stands: men are responsible for their families and their womenfolk and need to feel as sense of responsibility about the way that their wives etc. appear in public.

    However I would say that the article could do with editing and I would not have written it with the same wording if I was writing it today as I can see that it needs more clarification and a more enrolling approach to avoid any misunderstandings.

    F Barkatulla

  5. What’s the solution?
    MashaAllaah, the article was very well written. Jazakillah Khair to the author for highlighting this beautiful hadith.

    I think the author was rightly cautious of overstating the situation in her opening paragraph, but we can all easily identify examples which are far worse than this, and as common. Perhaps those who do not agree with the author’s solution could acknowledge if they agree (1) that there is a problem, and (2) that the solution lies in Islaam.

    If so, please share some constructive comments…

  6. OT: Righteous enough to wear Hijab?
    Assalaamu ‘alaykum,

    SN said [quote]being a good, honest person is SO MUCH MORE IMPT THAN JUST WEARING THE HIJAB. [/quote]

    and Sister Umm Anas said, [quote]I pray those of us wearing hijab can truly embody the modesty and compassion and lead others by our example.[/quote]

    Is it not the case that this man-made association between 2 [u]separate[/u] obligations (i.e. observing Hijab, and having good character/manners) has caused many to incorrectly claim that they are not righteous enough to fulfil the obligation of observing Hijab?

    I would be interested in knowing the evidence that links the obligation of Hijab and being good, honest and compassionate.

    JazakAllah Khair

  7. SubhanAllah!!!
    When will people learn that the emphasis on fulfilling hijab is not because its about hijab but because it is a commandment of Allah?! It is an ibadah in itself! Islam means submission, and we have to submit to all of it. Yes a person who is good, honest etc will be rewarded for that, but they are still falling into sin by not fulfilling a commandment. We don’t say that we’ll not drink alcohol but we’ll gamble when we know that both are prohibited so we will refrain from both. So when it comes to commandments we don’t say we’ll do this but not that, but we do all of them! On the DOJ we can’t say to Allah I didn’t feel I needed to wear hijab because I was honest and good or I didn’t think hijab was as important as being honest and good. We are meant to be honest and good BUT we are also meant to fulfil the commandment of hijab. Please lets just accept the FACT that it is an OBLIGATION to fulfil hijab and it is a COMMANDMENT from Allah and when one doesn’t fulfil an obligation, they are liable to being punished for that, allahu’alam. SubhanAllah I think back to when the sahabiyat were told the ayah of hijab and how swift they were to fulfil it (We hear and we obey) no questions asked. And today we have the audacity to say its not important any more or its not AS important as other things, fard is fard! And the rules of shari’ah hasn’t changed and will never do so!

  8. More emphasis of form over substance AGAIN!!!!!
    When will people ever learn that the Ibadah one does, the dawaa and being a good, honest person is SO MUCH MORE IMPT THAN JUST WEARING THE HIJAB.
    Stop judging others and worry abt your own audit on the Day Of Judgement.
    Muslims like you are pathetic

  9. katrina mumin

    Reflection on Qur’aan and Sunnah regarding any subject matter.
    Allaah speaks the truth. And ANY matter which Allaah and his Messenger have decided, we have nt right to have an opinion about it. When we do offer an opinion about what they have decided, this is liberalism, feminism, and tjotally not from the Deen. We should be careful how we speak on subjects which Allaah has informed us about. There is nothing unclear about how a woman should dress in Al-Islaam. THerefore is if a woman is exposing her “awrah”, then she is being disobedient to the Lord of All the Worlds. When her husband enjoins upon her what is good and forbids upon her what is wrong, that is his duty. If you consider this oppressive, then you are intimating that Allaah(azza wa jel) is oppressive, becasue the ORDER of how woman should dress came from HIM, Rabb Al Amin.

    Don’t get me wrong, I am not suggesting that a man beats his wife, or do anything that is not from the Qur’aan or Sunnah, but he has rights upon her, as she has rights upon him. This article is about the proper dress of women, therefore comments about men keeping their wives inside and forbidding them to go out, is misplaced and should not be discussed in conjunction with this article. It is entirely a different subject matter. When people make arguments that have no realation to what the subject matter is, is a convenient way of trying to place a negative light on the subject at hand. Stick to the topic, and look to the Qur’aan and Sunnah for guidance or waht is expressed in the article.

    If you have a wife, claiming to be Muslim, and she dresses provocatively unIslamic according to Qur’aan and sunnah, and she refused to dress according to Qur’aan and sunnah, leave her and find one who will obey the Lord of All the Worlds.

  10. The Growth of muslim feminists
    Subhanallah, by reading the comments i just realised how feminisim has crept into the mindset and way of thinking for such a huge number of muslims.

    islam is not about equality but JUSTICE! try understand the two concepts and BELEIVE me you will much rather have justice over equality…

  11. May Allah guide us!
    I appreciate the article. The thing is that when people forget about the hereafter, and they are just busy how nice they look like. Just busy for this temporary world and living a life of slavery of their own selves. Sisters i remind my self and you that imagine that on the day of judgement all your things are clear but when it comes to hijab, allh gets angry at you and finally you end up in hell fire. Yes obviously it might not be forever or Allah forgives you, but can you bear 70 times more hotter fire than this world even for a second?! And who knows how long the punishment lasts for and on the other hand if you have done hijab according to Islam you go Jannah forever and there you beautify yourself as much as you want! Also someone said in the comments that people take the scarf off when no ones looking at them ( well Allah is looking). The reason is that guidance is in Allah’s hand but you need to tell her in a nice and encouraging manner before enforcing it. When we don’t do tarbiyyah of our daughter when they are 5 or 6 years old and suddenly when they get into a teenage we tell them to put the scarf on. What kind of teaching manner is this. First tell them about hereafter and encourage them and warn them. And also these days some sisters think that hijab means to cover their body and that’s it. Sisters don’t fool your self and make Allah happy with you rather than shaytan! May Allah give us guidance.

  12. Mashallah Amazing article
    Jzk for this artice. It is something that really needs to be read my many mulims living here in the west. Brothers and sisters alike.

  13. Just to add….
    Just to comment on the sister who said women aren’t children and will have to answer to Allah on the DOJ themselves and her hsuband won’t be punished for her sins etc. Yes that’s true, everyone will answer for themselves on the DOJ. But if a sister is doing the sin of not wearing hijab etc, or if someone is sinning by e.g. listening to music, drinking alcohol (in front of others) and there is someone around them who can tell them that what they are doing is wrong, then that person has to do so. For them not speaking will be as if they are committing the sin too, subhanAllah. If after being told, the person continues to indulge in the sin, then the other person has done his/her part by telling them, and so the sin of not stopping an evil when its happening in front of them (hadith of stopping a munkar with you hands, or you tongue, or hating it in your heart which is the lowest level and the many ayats of enjoining the good and forbidden the evil) is lifted from them, and the sin will only be on the person who continues to do this sin even after being reminded. So if after repeated reminders from Husband, other family members of covering, a sister does not cover, the sin will only be on her but if the family members were not to remind her, then they will be held accountable for not trying to stop the sister from committing the sin of not covering, allahu’alam.

  14. Here we go AGAIN with MORE feminist influenced comments! Allahu Musta’an.
    On the comment on ‘i don’t need a man to tell me what to do’ but sis we have been told what to do by the Prophet (s) who was a man. If your father tells you to do something, you have to do so – it is fard for you to do so. Same as the husband. All this ‘i don’t want to be treated like a 2nd class citizen’ are such western feminist influenced statements and way of thinking. I don’t get how some Muslim sisters forget the status of Muslim women in Islam. For example, How Paradise lies under the mothers feet. Which brings me on to my next point; its so amazing how everyone remembers how Khadija (ra) was a businesswomen, yeah she was BUT she is one of the 4 best women of all times because of her role as a WIFE to the Prophet (s). Her being a businesswomen doesn’t factor in. Actually if you look at the 4 best women Maryam, Khadijah, Fatima and Asiyah you’ll find that 2 of them were mothers to 2 Prophets (Maraym=’Isa and Asiyah brough up Musa) and 2 of them were great wives (Khadija=Rasoolullah (s) and Fatima=Ali(ra). Because the 2 greatest roles a women can fulfil is that of a wife and a mother, that is where the greatest ajar for a women lie.
    And subhanAllah hijab is a struggle??? How exactly compared to something like Jihad- where our brothers (and sisters) have forsaken the whole world, their families, their wealth, all luxuries, a comfortable lifestyle to go to a land of Jihad and live and die for the sake of Allah. That is what is a struggle, hence why Jihad means struggle and lets not get into Jihad-al-nafs, yes it is a struggle of our nafs to fulfil the commandments of Allah and to stay away from the prohibitions, but there is no bigger Jihad al nafs than of the one who goes to fight fisabilillah. Fulfilling the commandments of the deen i.e. salah, hijab, growing a beard etc only become difficult if the person is not doing it for the sake of Allah. Because if one does it for the sake of Allah, they will not care the least what others say about it as their reward is with Allah. And Allah is with the patient. Hijab is an OBLIGATION, so regardless how one feels about wearing it, it has to be done. And lets just remind ourselves that no one knows the creation better than the creator. Hijab was prescribed on women and not men because Allah knows best how it is a benefit for the women (and may not serve the same benefit to men, although yes there are attractive men, but hijab was not prescribed on them but on us, that’s saying something) Men have been created with more geerah than women, as again Allah knows best who it is befitting for, men are allowed upto 4 wives and women only 1 husband, again because Allah knows best how being able to have more than 1 wife will benefit the men, wallahu’alam.

  15. What on earth
    Hijab is a struggle in light of Muslim women being in awe of contemporary culture in the Western world. Thee fitrah has been confused with this replacement ‘norm’. I don’t believe this is an excuse- a Muslim man must be like the Sunnah asks of him and the woman likewise. You can’t play into the slogans of feminism when you want to and then sing the tunes of ‘Qur’an and Sunnah’ the rest of the time. The effect of liberalism on Muslims is astounding.

  16. Abu Milk Sheikh

    The Truth Hurts
    MashaAllah. Lots of dayyooths came to voice their disapproval. Rather than “being a man” how the kuffaar want you to “be a man,” how about you follow the Sunnah of Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, and the practice of the Sahaba, like the author is telling you to? Subhanallah.

  17. Where has the mercy gone?
    I’m dissapointed at the tone of this article. Hijab is a struggle and we should be gently encouraging our sisters with mercy and wisdom. Its not on our menfolk to “force” it on us, as we all know what kind of behaviour can result from this type of compulsion especially on younger teenage girls.
    I pray those of us wearing hijab can truly embody the modesty and compassion and lead others by our example.

  18. Salam Umm Khalid,
    I agree with you. However, I think these people were trying to say that the author’s definition of gheera is wrong. She makes it seem like a man should be abusive.. As for men not covering, it is bc it isn’t practical. Men work in construction and other difficult jobs. Making them cover would be a burden on them. It doesn’t mean men aren’t attractive. When the sis said she has gheerah i think she meant it in the sense that she feels jealousy and protectiveness towards her husband too. The reason men were mentioned in the hadith is probably bc a woman’s gheerah can’t dO much while a man is expected to use his bodily strength to protect the woman from another man. A husband of some woman can’t be raped by a woman so the gheerah in the hadith wouldn’t apply to women bc that just doesn’t happen. If it does, the man can figjt it off. A woman probably might not be able to fight a man off so her husband is expected to protect her and if he does not Allah does not look at him on day of judgment bc he basically has no conscience. Anyone should protect whoeer they can on the basis of humanity so the fact that he didn’t help his wife is why Allah will not like him. Jealousy applies to everyone but in diff contexts.

  19. BUT…
    I understand and can appreciate this article’s message, but while I can see a father or brother enforcing the hijab, what about the young lady that isn’t convinced and refuses to wear it? Okay, she may LEAVE the house with it, but as soon as she is out of sight, it’s OFF! How is he responsible for this? She doesn’t feel nor understand the gheera yet. For this type of personality, this kind of “enforcement” can backfire and have the opposite effects, pushing the girl even FURTHER away from actually wearing hijab.

  20. BUT…
    I understand and can appreciate this article’s message, but while I can see a father or brother enforcing the hijab, what about the young lady that isn’t convinced and refuses to wear it? Okay, she may LEAVE the house with it, but as soon as she is out of sight, it’s OFF! How is he responsible for this? She doesn’t feel nor understand the gheera yet. For this type of personality, this kind of “enforcement” can backfire and have the opposite effects, pushing the girl even FURTHER away from actually wearing hijab.

  21. BUT…
    I understand and can appreciate this article’s message, but while I can see a father or brother enforcing the hijab, what about the young lady that isn’t convinced and refuses to wear it? Okay, she may LEAVE the house with it, but as soon as she is out of sight, it’s OFF! How is he responsible for this? She doesn’t feel nor understand the gheera yet. For this type of personality, this kind of “enforcement” can backfire and have the opposite effects, pushing the girl even FURTHER away from actually wearing hijab.

  22. “There is a big difference between how Islam values and protects women and how cheaply women are treated outside of Islam.”

    Unfortunatly, muslim doesn’t equal Islam. Alot of muslim women are wondering where are these values and protection? Where they find value, support, and protection is often from non muslims. Alot of revert sisters are left wondering where are all those wonderful Islamic sunnahs, principles, values, and support that they were taught about at the masjid? And for many revert american sisters, there is no one who has treated us more cheaply than those who were supposed to be our sisters and brothers in Islam.

    There are so many issues that need to be addressed in order to even think about reviving gheerah. I think back 12 years ago to when I made my shahadah and my heart swooned to think of having a husband who would have gheerah, and complete my deen, and be a garment for me, and support me, and guide me, and teach me, and be my partner through life as we lived our life worshipping Allah. It seems like a dream now. One that is never meant to come true. For myself, and so many other sisters that I know. Here we are. A decade later. Still trying to implement Islam. Still holding on to our faith and beliefs. But we understand the reality of the ummah now, and wish someone would have filled in the blanks a little sooner. Trying to keep the children we have raised upon siratul Mustaqeem and encourage them to find a muslim spouse when they can give us a long list of examples why they don’t even want to be married after watching what their mother has gone through.

  23. Had to comment
    I felt I had to comment in order to show support for this article after reading so many negative comments.
    Jazakillahu khiyr to the author. It encourages a revival of an essential quality in men which is gheerah and modesty in women.

    Additionally I am very disappointed in some of the comments which have been made. This artcile does not encourage “wife beating.” Use comman sense, a teacher enforces rules in a school but students are not getting beaten. If some men do cross the mark,
    “Is not Allah the best judge of those who judge.”

    We all have a duty in helping ourselves and our families in the affairs of our religion. As Allah says in the Quran,

    “Oh you who believe save yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones.”

  24. Assalam Aleikum Sister.

    May Allah bless the Ummah with more sisters like you….Alhamdulillah. May Allah increase you in knowledge and may He bless you and your family in this Dunia and the akhera…..AMEEN. Jazakallahu Keir Sister.
    Abuhaneefa

  25. I have gheerah too!
    I am a woman and have gheerah too. You can’t say that women should be modest and men jealous. Men and women were both created with feelings of jealous and both should STRIVE to be modest. Islam applies to both, not just one gender. I agree that women are not sheep and that on the Day of Judgment my husband can neither be punishe for what I have done nor rewarded. This author who is a woman makes it seem like women are children and do not have to answer Allah themselves. Lol. She needs to understand Islam first instead of writing such things which further cause issues.

  26. Here we go again with these feminist influenced comments
    Why is it that whenever there’s an article that addresses issues relating to sisters, e.g. this one or the attractive hijab one etc, then people feel the need to say stuff like oh but hijab isn’t just for sisters, or lets remind the brothers as well or what about the geerah of women?… like seriously why?! We aren’t feminists. Islam is not a religion of equality but it is a religion of justice! And yes Muslim men are commanded to lower their gaze, it is obligatory on them to do so, whether they feel desire when looking at a women or not, because of the ayah in Qur’an. But the verse of hijab was revealed FOR WOMEN! And if men not having geerah was not important, then why is it mentioned in a hadith that the dayooth (eng. equiv. cockled) will be one of those whom Allah does not look at on DOJ. The hadith doesn’t say the women who doesn’t have geerah but is referring to the MEN who do not have geerah. And something tells me when these ahadith and ayat were narated to the Sahabiyat they didn’t turn around and go, oh but what about the men, why aren’t they told to cover? But nowadays the feminist ideology is seeping into the minds of Muslim women, unfortunately. Do some history reading, Islam gave women rights loooong before the Western world even thought about them. And Islam comes from the word salama which means submission so we hear a command and we submit to it, we don’t ask question like why weren’t the men given a similar command, or why do we have to do such a thing. Don’t forget the principle, sam’i na wa ata’na – We hear and we obey. May Allah guide us all to what’s right, aameen. Oh and I think I missed something, how on earth does the article encourage domestic violence???

  27. A muslim woman

    What an irresponsible article!
    Dear Sister,

    How irresponsible of you to write such an article. I know of plenty of Muslim men with Gheerah and sadly that is where their Islamic responsibility ends. I know of men that don’t provide for their wives or children and rely on the state for benefits whilst they go away on Dawaah. They enforce Hijab upon their women and keep them in their houses like they would lock cattle in a barn. These women have no idea about what the world outside is about and then we wonder why Muslim’s are in such disarray and hardship. You have done nothing but give ignorant Muslim men the green light to carry on in their abusive and oppressive behaviour. What happened about there being no compulsion in Religion? Also as a adult woman I have the brain power to accertain what is wrong and what is right – I don’t need a man to tell me thank you very much. This doesn’t mean I’m a feminist – it means I don’t wanted to be treated like a second class citizen and wanted to be respected by my husband just as I would do him. Wasn’t Khadija (peace be upon her) a successful business woman who employed Muhammed S.A.W and then asked for his hand in marriage? How did she do that hidden away? Please think about what you write because as we well know – ignorance is rife amongst Muslims and words get misconstrued and used for people’s own benefit rather than what is pleasing to Allah!

  28. Yahya Abuelzein

    Salamu alaykum,
    I think this article has drawn some fairly wrong conclusions from the hadith.
    Firstly, it would not have been wrong from the islamic perspective if she rode on the back of the prophets camel. What prevented her was what she thought her husband would feel, which is fair enough.
    Secondly, her husband would not have minded if she rode on the prophets camel for her own convenience, again, nice and considerate of him.
    I don’t see how this leads to how men should now enforce niqab / hijab / certain behaviours on their wives and sisters.
    Encouraging men to effectively take offence to any interaction between a muslim woman and man is calling for trouble. You are asking us to be suspicious of evil intentions in both parties without any knowledge of what passes between them, a sin in itself.
    Women needing a firm / balanced / guiding hand … are we talking about children? Or adults who can think for themselves.
    Regarding wives, ultimately, people should be careful in who they marry, have a clear discussion about their standing on islamic issues and if they’re not happy, then Allah has given them a way out. Having to force people to do things I think points to the poor quality of the relationship in the first place.
    Regarding sisters, will any love of God come from being forced to put a hijab / niqab on?
    Becoming more knowledgeable in religion will insha Allah encourage people to act in the right way, and not because they fear a beating from their husband / father / brother.
    Some men are just more jealous than others in their nature, they should make those feelings known and their wives / sisters / mothers should acknowledge it, but it is up to the women to change their behaviour, not the man’s. Encouraging more jealosy will cause more problems than the article suggests it would solve.
    As noted by previous comments, men should also behave more appropriately and that just because Allah has not prescribed the hijab for them, doesn’t mean they can revel in their ‘beauty’. Women can be jealous too and what sort of people would we be not to take heed of that.

    An interesting article, thank you for it.
    Salamu alaykum

  29. To fellow commenters
    I think it’s unfair to say the article promotes domestic violence or anything of that sort. That’s a separate topic and I don’t think the writer has in anyway promoted oppression. What she has said is in line with Islamic laws.

    Yes, it is true that some men do oppress women and that this is a huge problem. But that doesn’t mean the topic of gheerah is never dealt with in a plain manner. Just like speaking about women’s rights doesn’t mean one denies women’s responsibilities.

    Would it be fair if a man, for example, writes a comment highlighting the faults of women on an article that asks men to give women their rights?

  30. Breath of Fresh Air
    Salaam alaikum,

    Excellent article, ma-sha Allah. I’m glad SOMEONE spoke up and I’m even more glad that that someone was a woman. Alhamdulillah, that even in today’s world we have such women in the Ummah.

    Jazaakillah khair.

  31. Agree
    Yes this is good, but also we should remind the brothers that they too should not dress nicely in front of other women, their wives do not like them to smile at other women, we women also have geerah for our husbands. Also, I hate it when we are supposed to cover up and yet some husbands still look at other women! It is more halal to see my face than the faces of other women so brothers if your wives are covering please remember to lower your gaze and not look at other women.

  32. Frustrated by Muslim men's double standards :(

    Correction
    Salaam. Wow I thought this was written by a brother so forgive me for attacking the brothers, but I have always heard this type of stuff in articles written by them. Never did I think a sister would fail to mention a woman’s gheerah. Khair, sorry brothers but I guess I should’ve address sisters and brothers when saying that they should wake up and realize that women too don’t like when their men flirt with others. Haram is haram, an women were told to wear hijab as per Allah’s commandment so they could be recognized as Muslim. No need to drag “tempting men” and that sort of illogical idea when a woman in hijab can still be beautiful or attractive to a religious man who likes that, just as I may be attracted to a fully covered man with a beard because I like the idea of a pious brother. Hope I was clear and sorry if I offended anyone. Just please wake up and realize that men and women are not from mars and venus–we are both from earth!

  33. disappointed
    This is a TERRIBLE article. We live in a society where domestic violence is on an increase in Muslim homes. I knew nothing about Islam when I got married and my husband beat me into wearing the niqab, how can you write an article saying “enforce” your wives. aH i wear the niqab now but not because i fear my ex husband but because i want to please my Allah.

    This article is ENCOURAGING men to force their wives!!!!! How are they meant to enforce it, elaborate on that. this gives licence to any egotistical man to behave like an animal.

  34. Frustrated by Muslim men's double standards :(

    Don’t agree with the way you mention this
    Salaam,
    I agree with the main point but not the way it was presented. Women don’t need a man’s “guiding hand” or whatever you said sorry I can’t go back to check. It is great to have a husband encourage his wife to do the right thing, and vice versa, but you can’t force someone. The prophet Muhammad SAW was told that he was a messenger. Once he told people the truth, his job was over. He didn’t have to kill himself worrying about why or who doesn’t follow the truth. I agree women should wear hijab–not because men will be “tempted” otherwise or whatever reason scholars and yourself choose to adopt–but because Allah told them to do so to distinguish themselves from other women. Also, I hope everyone knows that it is haram for men too to be flirting with women and that your wife is not just “nagging” if she cares. She has gheerah and feels jealous too. Unfortunately most Muslim men don’t even acknowledge this or accept that a woman can be similar to them in any shape, way or form. Wake up brothers!!!

  35. Let’s Agree To Disagree…?
    Brothers! How can you allow your wife or sister to walk around attracting the attentions and evil-thoughts of other men?
    -> because they’re free to do what they want.

    How can you not mind if she smiles as she talks to other men.
    -> because I want her to be happy

    Nobody has the right to enjoy her and her company but you and her Maharim men.
    -> Yeah, but seriously, I’m okay with it.

    You are not being overbearing if you first encourage and then enforce the hijab on your womenfolk
    -> Actually I think that would be kind of… erm… ‘overbearing’, and what’s the word… ‘sexist’, or ‘chauvinistic’

    …because YOU will be asked about it on the Day of Judgement and it is also a major sin upon you!
    -> No it isn’t. (doesn’t the Quran say “every soul shall earn what it sows, and will not be wronged”) – we’re all responsible for our own actions on that Day – you can’t hide behind your spouse or ‘menfolk’

    It is upon the men to enforce these things in their homes and you cannot use the excuse that your wife didn’t want to
    -> No, seriously, I am okay with it.
    -> (And don’t tell anyone, but I had this crazy idea…. ready…? Here goes: women should be free to wear whatever they want.)

    Women need a firm, balanced, guiding hand from their men, so with wisdom you must enforce hijab in your home
    -> this line of argument leads directly to wife-beating.

    You are a shepherd and are responsible for your flock!
    -> some women are not sheep.

  36. Let’s agree to disagree, shall we?
    Brothers! How can you allow your wife or sister to walk around attracting the attentions and evil-thoughts of other men?
    -> because they’re free to do what they want.

    How can you not mind if she smiles as she talks to other men.
    -> because I want her to be happy

    Nobody has the right to enjoy her and her company but you and her Maharim men.
    -> Yeah, but seriously, I’m okay with it.

    You are not being overbearing if you first encourage and then enforce the hijab on your womenfolk
    -> Actually I think that would be kind of… erm… ‘overbearing’, and what’s the word… ‘sexist’, or ‘chauvinistic’

    …because YOU will be asked about it on the Day of Judgement and it is also a major sin upon you!
    -> No it isn’t. (doesn’t the Quran say “every soul shall earn what it sows, and will not be wronged”) – we’re all responsible for our own actions on that Day – you can’t hide behind your spouse or ‘menfolk’

    It is upon the men to enforce these things in their homes and you cannot use the excuse that your wife didn’t want to
    -> No, seriously, I am okay with it.
    -> (And don’t tell anyone, but I had this crazy idea…. ready…? Here goes: women should be free to wear whatever they want.)

    Women need a firm, balanced, guiding hand from their men, so with wisdom you must enforce hijab in your home
    -> this line of argument leads directly to wife-beating.

    You are a shepherd and are responsible for your flock!
    -> some women are not sheep.

  37. Good article but…
    …this article is preaching to the converted as most of Islam21C’s readership do have a sense of gheerah for their women.

  38. MashaAllah
    Excellent article mashaAllah!! Jazakillahu khairun… and the hadith just hit the nail on the head! SubhanAllah Asmaa (ra) declined a ride with the purest of men and the best of creation, and nowadays Muslim women are comfortable enough to sit with and talk to strange men, distant relatives and so called ‘friends’ – sisters have to go back to having such beautiful modesty and brothers have to go back to having such praiseworthy jealousy. May Allah guide all of us to all that is good and correct, aameen!

  39. excellent article
    Thank you so much for writing such a beautiful piece.

    It bought peace to my heart because I thought there was something wrong with me, now I know its called Gheerah, and it was because of my Gheerah that my wife left me with my 2 sons and now I am having to fight through courts just to have access to see the innocent little babies.

    All this because of their mothers lack of understanding of firstly the deen and secondly of society.

    Thank you

  40. Very nice article
    Assalamu aleykum, Baraka Allahu fikum

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