Speech in the Al Isra’ wal Mi’raj Asy Syarif Cel­e­bra­tions 1436H /​2015: Empow­er­ment of Women To Per­form Their Human Role

Our minds are enlight­ened with Nuraniyah when fed from the knowl­edge of the pro­tected Al Quran, to under­stand that women and men are all pro­tec­tors of each other. Men and women are both respon­si­ble for the con­ti­nu­ity of human life, uphold hon­our and spread good qual­i­ties, morals and ethics. All of the believ­ers, men and women, are also entrusted to advo­cate what is right and for­bid what is evil.

Allah says in Surah At Taubah verse 71:

وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتُ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِيَاءُ بَعْضٍ ۚ يَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ

[The believ­ers, men and women, are pro­tec­tors of one another, they advo­cate what is right and for­bid what is evil.]

Allah Sub­hanahu wa Ta’ala does not under­mine the work of either man or woman. Thus, this promise of Allah is shown in the con­text of great works that women along­side the men are always tak­ing part in such as Hijra, expul­sion from home­land and endurance of suf­fer­ing for the sake of Allah.

Allah says in Surah Ali Imran verse 195:

فَاسْتَجَابَ لَهُمْ رَبُّهُمْ أَنِّي لَا أُضِيعُ عَمَلَ عَامِلٍ مِّنكُم مِّن ذَكَرٍ أَوْ أُنثَىٰ ۖ بَعْضُكُم مِّن بَعْضٍ

[And Allah has responded to them, never will I under­mine the work of any amongst you whether male or female, you are all off­springs of one another.]

Our minds are also enlight­ened by Nuraniyah when fed from the pure teach­ings and say­ings of Sayyidul Basyar Muham­mad Rasu­l­ul­lah ‘Alaihi Solawat­ul­lah. We can see with good under­stand­ing that the cho­sen Prophet is widely allow­ing women to par­tic­i­pate in all walks of life. The Prophet also takes care of those women who are weak and empow­ers those who are capa­ble of tak­ing up many roles, espe­cially in the field of edu­ca­tion and knowl­edge. Most of them have learnt the Hadith and the laws of the reli­gion. They used to go to the mosque and par­tic­i­pate actively as part of their daily lives. One of the great­est roles car­ried out by women along­side men is the Bai’at to Sayyid­ina Muham­mad ‘Alaihi Solawat­ul­lah (in the 2nd Aqabah), to defend and sup­port Sayyid­ina Muham­mad ‘Alaihi Solawatullah.

Based on the sacred texts, it is clear that Islam has paved the way for women to exe­cute dif­fer­ent types of roles at home, in the fam­ily, in all aspects of life, in estab­lish­ing the val­ues of Islam and pro­tect­ing Al A’tab Al Muham­madiyah [The Prophetic Thresh­old]. How­ever, since the era of oppres­sion and dark­ness, many inter­pre­ta­tions are deny­ing women of their rights to per­form their roles and duties.

To restore the glo­ri­ous days of Mus­lims in the past that wit­nessed the mutual par­tic­i­pa­tion of men and women, Al Usrah Al Dan­daraweyah has declared its vision to elab­o­rate on the roles of women and the best means in exe­cut­ing these roles. This shall be achieved through gath­er­ings and dis­cus­sions which start today (in this con­fer­ence in Dan­dara) and will con­tinue in all Markaz Dan­dara to thor­oughly define the roles and tasks of women.

To start off these dis­cus­sions, I have cho­sen an essen­tial role of women. I shall elab­o­rate in detail from the Dan­darawi per­spec­tive on the def­i­n­i­tion of this role and how it devel­ops into many tasks. This essen­tial role is her role in the fam­ily, specif­i­cally on how to raise her chil­dren. This topic shall be divided into three parts.

Part 1

As a base of our dis­cus­sion, I will start with three rel­e­vant ideas on the roles of women in general:

The 1st idea: The social roles of women.

Many peo­ple embrace the idea of “the social roles of women”. This idea is rel­e­vant but it does not encom­pass all roles of women. Due to that, we need to enlarge the scope of our vision to include all the roles avail­able for women as a human being to par­tic­i­pate in all four human lev­els as follow:

•Indi­vid­ual

•Fam­ily

•Soci­etal

•Ummah

From the Dan­darawi per­spec­tive, these four lev­els form the broad frame­work for the topic on the roles of women.

The 2nd idea: The under­stand­ing of “role”.

The first step to exe­cute any role is to know and under­stand its require­ments. In fact, most female roles require knowl­edge, under­stand­ing and expe­ri­ence, even nat­ural roles such as motherhood.

The 3rd idea: Exe­cut­ing the role.

Based on the Dan­darawi per­spec­tive, we eval­u­ate the role based on exe­cu­tion. There are sev­eral nar­ra­tions, dis­cov­er­ies and inven­tions that change the course of very impor­tant indus­tries, done by some peo­ple whose roles are regarded by peo­ple around them as insignif­i­cant and not influ­en­tial. That is why our Fikr Dan­darawi teaches us that there are Ahkam [rules] and Ihkam [pre­cise exe­cu­tion] for any role. After which, we need to explore the roles of women, explain­ing their Ahkam and Ihkam. This is sim­i­lar to the roles of men. Ahkam includes Halal and Haram as well as char­ac­ter and dis­obey­ing any of them is regarded as a sin. Ihkam is based on the prin­ci­ples and man­ner­isms that orig­i­nate from the way of Sayyidul Muwah­hidin Solawat­ul­lahi ‘Alaih in exe­cut­ing the Ahkam. Vio­lat­ing these prin­ci­ples and man­ner­isms exposes an individual’s action to destruc­tion and ineffectiveness.

Part 2

After pre­sent­ing these ideas, I will move on to the spe­cific role that I have cho­sen, “The role of a woman in the fam­ily”. With that, I will explain its con­tent in order to give a bet­ter understanding.

A woman has not only one but many roles in her fam­ily. For exam­ple, her role as a wife accord­ing to the Ahkam and Ihkam as pro­tected in the sacred texts of Al Quran and Hadith, her role as a house­wife who par­tic­i­pates in fam­ily finances, expen­di­ture and pri­or­i­ties, as well as her role as a mother. Among all these roles, I have cho­sen the role of a mother to fur­ther explain it so as to assist us in under­stand­ing this role.

Her role as a mother is not only lim­ited to pro­vid­ing care, food and edu­ca­tion, but the role also includes rais­ing the chil­dren with the true Aqi­dah to Allah Azza wa Jalla and Aqi­dah to Rasu­l­ul­lah ‘Alaihi Solawat­ul­lah. In fact, she is also respon­si­ble to instill in her chil­dren that Rasu­l­ul­lah plays a role in their lives, not only one but two roles. She has to edu­cate her chil­dren to accept the first role of Rasu­l­ul­lah as the Final Rasul that estab­lishes Islam in their hearts through the four com­mit­ments of Maslak, Suluk, Man­haj and Min­haj. It is a mother’s respon­si­bil­ity to edu­cate them to embrace the Muham­madi Guar­an­tee through Al Irt­ibat [bind­ing] with the self of Sayyidul Basyar Muham­mad Rasu­l­ul­lah ‘Alaihi Solawat­ul­lah with two con­cur­rent Irt­ibat (Irt­ibat Iman and Irt­ibat Intima’), so as to achieve Tak­win Al Muham­madi. She is also respon­si­ble to mould the child’s human iden­tity since the early stage of his child­hood so that he will not be affected by any devi­a­tion or temptation.

Part 3

To explain the role of a mother in edu­cat­ing her child and to show the traits of this role, we shall look into its spe­cific tasks so that she is able to exe­cute them with Ihkam. This role can be divided into 7 tasks.

1st task: She has to ful­fill her Tak­win Muham­madi so that she becomes a mir­ror that exposes Tak­win Muham­madi to her children.

A child learns with all his senses while his mother is his first school and teacher. If he sees that his mother’s actions con­tra­dict her teach­ings to com­mit to the reli­gion and char­ac­ter, indeed the child will imi­tate his mother and grow up to become a per­son who does not do what he says.

A mother who is deter­mined to raise her chil­dren with Tak­win Muham­madi must not leave this task to oth­ers, not even to Madaris Dan­dara Lit Ta’sil Al Ma’rifi [The Dan­dara Schools to Attain Knowl­edge]. The role of a mother is the foun­da­tion needed to raise her chil­dren with Tak­win Muham­madi and the efforts of Madaris Dan­dara only com­ple­ment this role. There­fore, this role effec­tively begins only when she has achieved her Tak­win Muhammadi.

It is impor­tant for us to note that when a woman achieves her Tak­win Muham­madi, indeed she will reflect Ihkam in all her roles, not only her role to edu­cate her children.

2nd task: To intro­duce a child with the fac­tors of his human iden­tity in general.

A mother should help her child to under­stand his human iden­tity and to dis­cover him­self, in sim­ple lan­guage and a direct man­ner. There­fore, when a mother fails in her Masirah Zatiyah, she can never edu­cate her child to under­stand his human iden­tity. The role of a mother to edu­cate her child is not just a mat­ter of teach­ing Al Wat­siqah Al Baidha’ but to edu­cate him through actions by lead­ing her life as an Insan Muhammad.

3rd task: To raise the child to uphold the rights of the reli­gion which is the first fac­tor for the human identity.

This task oblig­ates a mother to mon­i­tor her child closely with love and care, while being firm and por­tray­ing a good exam­ple so that her child is com­mit­ted in estab­lish­ing Islam in his heart. She also has to be con­cerned that her child per­forms his Ibadah [reli­gious oblig­a­tions] such as Solat and fast­ing, is com­mit­ted to Suluk Al Muham­madi Al ‘Azhim [the great Muham­madi char­ac­ter] so that he does not lie and cheat, is not self­ish but coop­er­a­tive with oth­ers, and inter­acts with peo­ple around him with mutual love and compassion.

4th task: To raise child upon estab­lished prac­tices (through Irt­ibat Iman).

A mother should train her child since his early child­hood to be con­cerned with the four ele­ments of his self-​formation (body, soul, desire and mind). With that, he will grow up to under­stand his own self and his ele­ments, and the neces­sity to care for each ele­ment to ensure its effec­tive­ness. As an Insan Muham­mad, a mother should begin to edu­cate her child with Tak­win Muham­madi by train­ing him to ful­fill the Estab­lished Prac­tices (through Irt­ibat Iman). This should be done even before he reaches an age where he com­pletely under­stands the mean­ing of Irt­ibat with the self of Rasu­l­ul­lah Sol­lal­lahu ‘Alaihi Wasallam.

5th task: To mon­i­tor the inter­ac­tions of the child.

As an Insan Muham­mad who edu­cates her child with Tak­win Muham­madi, a mother should mon­i­tor his inter­ac­tions with the peo­ple around him and raise him based on the Promi­nent Inter­ac­tions (through Irt­ibat Intima’). This should be done even before he reaches an age where he com­pletely under­stands the mean­ing of Irt­ibat with the self of Rasu­l­ul­lah Sol­lal­lahu ‘Alaihi Wasal­lam. Since his early child­hood, the mother should mon­i­tor her child’s inter­ac­tion with his sib­lings and neigh­bours. As he gets older, she should mon­i­tor his inter­ac­tions with his rel­a­tives and school­mates, and train him to accept oth­ers and inter­act well with them despite dif­fer­ent ide­o­log­i­cal sects, social sta­tuses, racial eth­nic­i­ties and geo­graph­i­cal regions.

6th task: To raise the child to embrace achieve­ments and develop the poten­tial of his per­sonal work to reflect Tak­win Muhammadi.

A mother should moti­vate her child since his early child­hood to ful­fill achieve­ments, regard­less of its nature. She should encour­age him and show appre­ci­a­tion and admi­ra­tion towards his achieve­ments so as to build con­fi­dence in him­self and real­ize his poten­tial. As he gets older, the mother’s moti­va­tion should con­tinue when he starts school­ing. She should be firm in encour­ag­ing him to excel in his stud­ies while being tol­er­ant and under­stand­ing at the same time. She should also help him to check on the poten­tial of his per­sonal work to ensure that it reflects Tak­win Muhammadi.

Besides, the mother should edu­cate the child the mean­ing of ‘will’ and ‘willpower’, in which will requires effort while willpower requires abil­ity. She also teaches him that suc­cess in per­sonal work can only be achieved when the pur­suit of his will is dri­ven by the abil­ity of his willpower to exe­cute his per­sonal work. While prac­tic­ing Tak­win Muham­madi at the same time, the child will under­stand through his per­sonal expe­ri­ences that through Irt­ibat Al Iman and Al Intima’, Sayyidul Basyar Muham­mad Rasu­l­ul­lah ‘Alaihi Solawat­ul­lah becomes the per­son who defines the pur­suit of his will and pro­pels the abil­ity of his willpower.

7th task: To raise the child by ensur­ing that his role in a group reflects Tak­win Muhammadi.

A mother should moti­vate her child to be influ­en­tial in his soci­ety. He should not be some­one who is at the side­lines among his peers or sim­ply fol­low­ing oth­ers and does not have any opin­ions nor any ben­e­fi­cial sug­ges­tions. The mother should also edu­cate him that his role in a group increases his social stature and that his influ­ence among peo­ple around him increases deeply when­ever his Wij­dan [heart] grows in capac­ity and his Wujud [exis­tence] extends in dis­tance. One of the great boun­ties bestowed upon a per­son who has Tak­win Muham­madi is that he will not be mis­led in exe­cut­ing his role in a group because through his Irt­ibat Al Iman and Al Intima’, Sayyidul Basyar Muham­mad Rasu­l­ul­lah ‘Alaihi Solawat­ul­lah becomes the Sayyid [Mas­ter] for the capac­ity of his Wij­dan and the Za’im [Guar­an­tor] for the dis­tance of his Wujud.

Con­clu­sion: Indeed a mother’s ded­i­ca­tion in exe­cut­ing her role to edu­cate her chil­dren with Ihkam does not exclude the father in exe­cut­ing his because there are some who neglect it while oth­ers ful­fill it com­pletely. There­fore, the child and the fac­tors of his human iden­tity are the respon­si­bil­ity of both par­ents. This means that the child’s reli­gion, self-​formation, per­sonal work and role in a group are all the respon­si­bil­i­ties of both his parents.

This speech was addressed by Al-​Amir Hashem ibn Al-​Fadl ibn Al-​Abbas El Dan­darawy, Sumuwwul Amir of the Tribes and Familes of Al Usrah Al Dan­daraweyah and Head of the Inter­na­tional Dan­dara Cul­tural Cen­tres. To under­stand more about the two roles of Rasu­l­ul­lah ‘alaihi Solawat­ul­lah, Al Irt­ibat and Al Usrah Al Dan­daraweyah, please click here to read Trans­la­tion of Al Wat­siqah Al Baidha’ For­ma­tion and Model © 2013

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