Salam Dear Sister,
Thank you for submitting your question to our website and for contacting Ask About Islam.
Misogyny, which is the hatred or mistrust of women, combined with a patriarchal society system, which entails the apparent ‘dominance’ of men over women in a society (which Islam has endorsed, but according to its own specific rules and laws), are sadly seeped very deeply into the minds and psyches of many, if not most, men in our Ummah today.
There are various reasons for this phenomenon, viz. why many Muslim men look down upon women as a whole, but speaking as a mother, I think that it is primarily because of the way little male and female children are raised during their early youth by the younger Muslim mothers of today, who are by and large ignorant of authentic knowledge of the Quran and Sunnah.
When young boys grow up in misogynist households/societies, they mature into insecure, arrogant and controlling men as adults, who try to dominate women by using force, manipulation, coercion and verbal/physical abuse to subjugate and oppress them.
The worst part is when, in order to deride, demean and control their mahram women, they attribute lies to Allah and to the pure religion of Islam.
Anyhow, I can understand your frustration at hearing these ‘rumors’ about Allah, may He be exalted and glorified.
May Allah safeguard you and all of us, from being deviated from our pure faith in Islam because of such absurd hearsay and appalling lies and fabrications that ignorant and bigoted people make about Allah.
Why Men Subjugate Women
Islam offers the perfectly balanced social and political system that can allow society to thrive successfully and peacefully. This system exists somewhere in between modern-day, secular feminism and traditional political patriarchy.
The subjugation of weaker segments of society by the powerful ones has always been prevalent among mankind. At the top of the list of weaker people in any society, are elders, children, women and (historically) slaves. These segments of society have always fallen victim to the bigotry and oppression of powerful men with ulterior motives.
In Islam, women are respected, guarded, valued, and honored. They are not allowed to be exploited by anyone, nor are they allowed (i.e. burdened) to take on political or other roles of leadership that they are not naturally predisposed to fulfill.
Men have been obligated to take care of women and to provide for them, because women have been tested with a weaker physical/bodily form that is periodically travailed by the pains and rigors of menses, pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and menopause.
However, men have to do this very respectfully, gently, and lovingly, the way Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, set an example of this during his life, in his kind treatment of all of his wives and daughters.
So why do some Muslim men today, especially those hailing from Eastern cultures, habitually deride and demean women, and claim that women are disadvantaged both in this world and the next, as compared to them, who have supposedly been ‘favored’ by Allah in many ways?
The answer is: because of their insecurity, arrogance and ignorance of Islam (jahl). Only insecure and ignorant men make such claims, because they lack taqwa – the consciousness of Allah, that He is watching and hearing them.
Any Allah-fearing man would actually dread and writhe with fear at the prospect of the extra questioning and account-taking that he will be subjected to in the Akhirah because of his position of power and authority over women in this world, instead of gloating about it before them, as if he is something extra-special because of which supposedly Allah made him a man and not a woman! SubhanAllah! All men, like women, are being tested by Allah during this life.
Muslim men, – in any leadership role, who fear Allah actually dread having to answer for how they took care of their subjects in this world; and how they fulfilled their rights and responsibilities towards them – they do not boast about it before the latter, puffed up with self-deceiving pride and arrogance at being ‘favored’ by Allah as the dominant gender!
This boastful behavior is actually indicative more of their arrogance and insecurity than of their ability to lead women!
The truth is that men have been granted social and political authority over women for two reasons: (a) because they are physically stronger, and (b) because they are not as easily swayed by emotions as women are.
That being said, there are several ways in which women are superior to men, e.g. only women can nurture, rear, care for, and educate children younger than 7 years old, most men do not have the patience or the ability to do so.
Also, as a mother, a woman has complete authority over her sons — they cannot rebuke her or even raise their voice at her.
Similarly, women have been favored by not being obligated to toil for earning a living; they can take what they need from their mahram man’s money, whereas men do not enjoy this privilege except during early youth; they have no choice but to leave the home to go to work in order to provide for their families.
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