Hijab- A Cover or An Armour?


As the world marked the World Hijab Day, I sat back and admired the comments and articles that flowed in appreciating the effect the ‘Scarf’ had on the heads of the women and how they felt protected and safe whilst in the public. There is no doubt that this has set a milestone and sent a clear message to the public and sectors of the world that claimed Hijab was an oppression towards women and should be banned. One can only hope that the message does reach the concerned and pray that it brings about a positive attitude towards the Hijab.

On the other hand, there have been various campaigns held throughout the world to create awareness about what the actual hijab is, how it is supposed to be worn, and the actual definition of the word hijab. The rise of coats, cardigans, shellas and all those attractive long sleeves shirts and t shirts have been used as hijab by many of our women simply because it covers the body.

Thus I sat down with a friend and asked her what she thought of it. She then termed it as ‘Modern Hijab’, to which she simply said:

“I don’t find it wrong, I wear it as well and it’s covering my body, so why not?”

It is here that I realised that probably the word Hijab needs a detailed definition, since everyone defines it in a way which is suitable to themselves. I joined the bandwagon and decided to define Hijab as- ‘An Armour’

Why an Armour?

Armour which in simple terms can be defined as a protection is commonly used in war and battles to protect oneself from the enemy and all sorts of danger. Similarly, the life that we live is a battle between the good and the evil, the right and the wrong. More importantly however, is the battle between the desires and the soul. Just like every battle has a commander in chief or the flag bearer of the army, something that every soldier dreams of; in this battle we are the flag bearers of our own army, and are solely responsible to the outcome of the battle.

It is a very rare scene where a soldier heads towards the battlefield with half an armour, or a plain uniform, rather, all that we witness is a strong shield, layers of protection all with one objective- to protect oneself.

Similarly, if one was given a precious jewel, he/she would do all that is within their ability to protect it from every sort of theft, danger of loss or in extreme cases from the slightest of scratches. All this is done with an aim of protecting the jewel, which is monetary, which may not even be the best in the market and could be replaced with a better one, yet; so much importance and so much protection is given to it.

This is where I wonder, how much importance is given to a monetary thing, and how it is treated with so much protection and effort offered to it. Yet, the most precious jewel, which is so sacred, vital to the society, but most of all has heaven underneath its feet, is today exposed to world- uncovered, unprotected, half protected, fully covered yet no protection!

Take a moment and ask yourself these questions:

Does the cardigan, the coat, the long sleeves t shirt, the shirts and thermals offer me the much needed protection? They do offer the cover no doubt, but do they offer me the protection from the evil eye, from lusty thoughts and desires of people around me? Do I as a jewel not deserve protection? Do I as the bearer of heaven not deserve to protect this bounty from the evil?

My Hijab should not be like an insurance policy which covers me; it should act as a vaccination that will protect me from being affected by any disease.

However, we live in a free world. Where everyone has their own choice and are enslaved to the modern world. But my question to you is:

If the bravest of soldier wears an armour to protect himself, if the jewel is covered and protected by yourself and stored in the safest of places, then what about yourself? Is your armour strong enough to protect you? Or is it like my car insurance policy, covering me from any losses, but not protecting me from the accident in the first place.

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