Adonis Diaries

Archive for April 23rd, 2009

WOMEN IN ISLAM: Modesty and Dress Codes (Part 8, April 23, 2009)

 

Note: The political applications and practises by the various Moslem sects do not necessarily correspond to the intention of the original Prophet Muhammad’s message.

 

Modesty, in the broadest sense, means humility, restraint in manner and conduct, avoiding excess and presenting an unpretentious appearance. In sourat al Nur (light) it is read: “And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments..”

            Abdullah ibn Mass’ud reported, “I asked the Messenger of Allah , ‘What is the greatest sin?’ He replied, ‘To set up rivals with Allah by worshipping others although He alone has created you’. I asked, ‘What next?’ He said, ‘To kill your child lest it should share your food’. I asked, ‘What next?’ He said, ‘To commit adultery with the wife of your neighbour’ (zina)”  The Koran warns in sourat al Israa “Nor come nigh to adultery: for it is a shameful (deed) and an evil, opening the road (to other evils)”.

 

          The first step on the road to zina is sight. It is only after a person has had a glance that his desire are inflamed. The believing men and women are restricted from gazing at one another, as this is the gateway to greater sin. The Prophet said: “the zina of the legs is walking towards an unlawful act, the zina of the hands is touching and patting, and the zina of the eyes is casting passionate “lances at those who are forbidden to you”

 

        It is the second glance which is punishable. The Prophet advised Ali “O Ali, do not allow your first glance to be followed by a second, because the first glance is permitted for you but the second is not”.  And “Let no male stranger sit in privacy with a female stranger, for the third among them is Satan”‘. And “Do not go to the houses of women whose husbands are absent”.

 

        There are exceptions to this prohibition on looking at members of the opposite sex. In the case of medical examinations or treatment, deciding on a marriage partner, recording evidence or carrying out criminal investigations, the rulings are relaxed somewhat, but proper conduct and modesty must still be adhered to.

 

        Practically, the free mixing of men and women from the time they become sexually aware to the time they are no longer sexually active is prohibited. Muslims are required to dress modestly and conceal their private parts (awrah).  In the case of men awrah extends from the navel to the knee; in the case of women awrah includes the whole body except the face, hands and (according to some Hanafi scholars) feet. Muslims should wear clothes that are loose fitting, thick (non-transparent) and simple (not ostentatious or gaudy). 

In sourat al Nur it is read: “And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their sons, their husbands’ sons, their brothers or their brothers’ sons, or their sisters’ sons, or their women, or the slaves whom their right hands possess, or male servants free of physical needs, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex; and that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments. And O Believers! Turn all together towards Allah, that you may attain Bliss.” In sourat al Ahzab (sects) it is said: “O Prophet! Tell your wives and daughters, and the believing women, that they should cast their outer garments over their persons (when abroad): that is most convenient, that they should be known (as such) and not molested. And Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful.

 

     

       Umm Salamah reported that she and Maymunah (who were both wives of the Prophet ) were with the Prophet when the blind son of Umm Maktum came to speak with him. The Prophet told his wives to observe hijab in front of the visitor Umm Salamah said, “O Messenger of Allah, he is a blind man and will not see us”. The Prophet said, “He may be blind but you are not, and do you not see him”? The Prophet issued a warning: “Those women who appear naked even though they are wearing clothes, who allure and are allured by others, and who walk in a provocative manner, will never enter Paradise, or even smell its fragrance”.

 

Note 1: The Moslem clerics would like you to understand that the main aim of hijab is to allow Muslim women to enjoy the ability to express their personality and their intellect independently of men’s whims and desires.  It would be interesting to get the opinion of the concerned women on that concept.

 

Note 2: Since antiquity, noble women wore the veil to be distinguished from the working women; the veil was a symbol of ranking because the sun did not alter the freshness of the face since whitness of the skin was very praised.  In Europe, women used to have a veil attached to their hats and they would lower the veil when outside their homes.  In Mecca, the wives and girls of the rich traders wore the veil when out of their homes.  In Yathreb or Medina women were practically running a martriarchal system and thus, were mostly woking women.  Whe the Prophet Muhamad had to flee to Medina his folowers from Mecca were subjected to a cultural shock.  The Prophet had to be biased toward his followers because they were the backbone of his power.  Gradually but steadily the tradition and customs in Medina were altered. The Prophet took advantage of golden opportunities. After the inevitable rumors and flapps over his many wives behaviors the Prophet edicted that his wives would wear veil when on the streets and be accompanied by relatives.  The society followed the fashion of the famous.

 

Note 3: The “Chador” and the dress codes of totally covering the body in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Afghanistan, and where extra-conservative Moslem sects are predominant are not dictated by the Koran.  They are simply patriarchal political acts meant to humiliate women and relegate them to non-individual class.

Women  IN ISLAM: Divorce (Part 7)

 

Note: The political applications and practices by the various Moslem sects do not necessarily correspond to the intention of the original message of the Prophet Muhammad.

 

Prophet Muhammad said: “Divorce is the most hateful of all lawful things in the sight of Allah”.

Divorce is allowed as a last resort.  If divorce were forbidden, animosity and adultery may become rampant.

To save individuals and society from the greater evils, divorce has been permitted. However, it is not a step to be taken lightly or hastily. Sincere attempts at reconciliation are to be made first and – as in the case of marriage – the rights and welfare of women are to be upheld.

 

Imam al Ghazzali (1058 CE), who is honored with the title of Hujjat al Islam, wrote in ‘The Proof of Islam‘: “the greatest care should be taken to avoid divorce, for, though divorce is permitted, yet Allah disapproves of it. If divorce becomes essential then the woman should be divorced kindly, not through anger or contempt, and not without a valid reason. After the divorce, a man should give his former wife a present and not announce to others any of her shortcomings.”

 

The Koran advises a couple who are facing difficulties in their marriage to appoint arbiters.  In sourat al Nissaa it is read:” If you fear a breach between them twain, appoint (two) arbiters, one from his family and the other from hers; if they wish for peace, Allah will cause their reconciliation…But if they disagree (and must part), Allah will provide abundance for all from His All-Reaching bounty.”

 

In order to dissolve a marriage, it is essential to pronounce a declaration of “talaq”. There are three types of talaq (divorce) that are practiced among Muslims:

First, talaq ahssan – (the preferable type of divorce): After issuing one pronouncement of divorce, the couple wait for the ‘iddah (waiting period, which consists of three menstrual cycles of the wife, usually three months). During this time, all possible attempts at reconciliation should be made. The husband may take his wife back at any time during the ‘iddah period. During the period of iddah the man must oblige to either keep the woman in the same home or at least furnish her with a comfortable apartment, which is easily accessible to him. Further, the man must provide for her as if no divorce has taken place.

At the end of the iddah or waiting period if reconciliation has failed then the marriage is broken. In sourat al-Talaq it is read: “And fear Allah, your Lord: and turn them not out of their houses, nor shall they (themselves) leave, except in case they are guilty of some open lewdness, those are limits set by Allah: and any who transgress the limits of Allah, does verily wrong his (own) soul: you know not if perchance Allah will bring about thereafter some new situation.”

Second, talaq hassan – is a divorce where a man pronounces talaq to his wife in three consecutive state of purity.

Third, talaq bid’i where the husband issues three pronouncements of divorce at one time. According to the majority of jurists, this talaq is valid but it is against the spirit of the Shari’ah and so the man is an offender in the eyes of the law.  The last Talaq bid’i is considered a serious act against the Islamic teachings. The second Caliphate Umar, a close companion of the Prophet, used to whip the husband who pronounced divorce thrice at once and in the same sitting.

 

The sourat al-Baqarah (virginity) it is read: ” When you divorce women, and they fulfill the term of their (‘Iddah), either take them back on equitable terms or set them free on equitable terms; but do not take them back to injure them, (or) to take undue advantage; if any one does that, he wrongs his own soul.

Do not treat Allah’s Signs as a jest, but solemnly rehearse Allah’s favors on you, and the fact that He sent down to you the Book and Wisdom, for your instruction. And fear Allah, and know that Allah is well-acquainted with all things.”

Islam treads the middle ground in the divorce concept, and safeguards the rights of women. It neither prohibits divorce, thereby imprisoning women, nor does it regard divorce as an insignificant decision.

The right to divorce is not restricted to the husband. The woman may also seek a dissolution of the marriage by means of a process known as faskh, whereby she applies to the Qadi (Judge) for an annulment of the marriage.

The wife may seek faskh  (annulment) in several cases, including: apostasy (renunciation of Islam) by the husband; lack of equality of status (kafi’ah); lack of compatibility; spoiling of marriage (fasad); incurable impotence on the part of the husband and if the husband ill treats the woman (nushuz). The above cases present valid grounds for a woman to seek divorce from her husband. If the couple come to a mutual agreement for separation and get divorced then this is called khul.

 

In sourat al Nissaa it is read: “If the wife fears cruelty or desertion on her husband’s part, there is no blame on them if they arrange an amicable settlement between themselves; and such settlement is best…”

 

Islam has decreed justice for both sexes in the case of divorce. Although the act of divorce is disliked, it is permitted for the sake of weak human souls who cannot always find comfort and solace in the marriage relationship. This is mainly due to lower tolerance levels, high expectations in others and needless desires.

100 years old RLM and she is kicking (April 25, 2009)

 

            Rita Levi-Montalcini (RLM) received Nobel Prize in 1986 for discovering “Nerve Growth Factor, NGF”.  RLM is 100 years old and still coming to work and running the non-profit neuroscience research center called the European Brain Research Institute (EBRI) in Rome. The Italian President Ciampi named her Senator for life in 2001.

            In 2001, RLM had wondered “In what scientific domain has Italy always been the best?” Galvani and Volta discovered animal electricity; Golgi invented cell nerve coloring; Vittorio Erspamer isolated serotonin and other neurotransmitters; Giuseppe Levi (her professor) was among the first to experiment with in-vitro culture.  Consequently, RLM research center would be dedicated to neurosciences.

            RLM is writing another book; she had published “Praise to Imperfection” and “The Ancestors”.  In “Ancestors” RLM described 70 bright women thinkers.  She likes to remind the new generation that human brain is of two parts: the tiny archaic or limbic brain that is 3 millions years old in evolution and that is identical to mammals and which control our emotions (positive and negative) and the newer cognitive brain, the neocortex, which has been in development for only 150,000 years as man invented language. The old brain saved man from the ferocious animals when he descended from trees but then it will destroy man by using the mass destructive weapons.  She believes that the end of humanity is soon because the old brain will activate the lethal weapons.

            RLM hires mostly brilliant women researchers because women were denied education for centuries.  She said: “Only hungry people enjoy eating”.  There are no genetic differences between man and women; there are voluntary epigenetic (development) differences exercised by patriarchal cultures.  RLM distributed 6,700 educational grants in Africa since 2001 because she wants to tend to analphabetism, a disease far worst than leper, cholera, and tuberculosis combined.  Her hero feminine scientist and thinker is Hypatia.  Hypatia lived in Alexandria in the 4th century AC; she invented the astrolabe, the planisphere and taught philosophy in the street. Bishop Cyril got jealous of her intellectual fame and harangued zealot Christians to tear her to pieces; Hypatia flesh was burned afterward in the public square.

            RLM has demonstrated that NGF is present in the ovocyte and the sperm and it can cure Alzheimer, Parkinson, and lateral sclerosis amyotrophic patients.  Her eyesight and hearing are almost gone but she claims that her thinking is much more active than when she was 20 years old.  RLM only vanity is luxury dresses.

            RLM has the attitude of turning catastrophes into opportunities.  When the Mussolini regime issued laws in 1938 that restricted RLM horizons she installed a laboratory in her apartment and then moved on to doing research at the University of Washington in Saint Louis in 1960.  After the Israeli massacres in the Palestinian camps of Sabra and Chatila in Beirut (Lebanon) in 1982, RLM lead a demonstration to Israel’s Embassy in Rome and carrying the banner that read: “Sabra and Chatila are part of our struggle” for human dignity and defending human rights.

Jewish Colonies in Palestine: Major Dumping Grounds (April 24, 2009)

The Oslo accord was signed in 1993 for a Palestinian homeland.  There were 112 colonies in the Palestinian land for a total of 265,000 Jewish colons.  In 2006, 150 colonies were established with a total of 453,000 colons and new expansions are already decreed by the State of Israel

The successive Israeli governments, regardless of ideology, were the instigators for the planning and funneling of the funds and budgets. The Israeli governments had many motivations:

1. nationalist for occupying and extending “Great Israel”,

2. for better defensive positions,

3. for demographic modifications, and

4. for economic greed. 

Initially, most of the “savage” colonies were erected along the Jordanian border. Then Goush Emounim wanted to settle in Samaria.  As the Likoud government of Begin came to power in 1977, the rate of colonies increased to create de facto status that would prevent the establishment of a Palestinian State.  The fact is that the colons were enticed to relocate for economic reasons and the availability of financial facilities.

In 2005, General Shaul Mofaz, Defense Minister, charged his deputy in the ministry, General Baruch Spiegel, to gather information on the colonies as reliable data base. Ehoud Barak would not publish the findings on ground of “State Security”. 

The daily Ha’Aretz managed to secure the data base of all colonies arranged in alphabetical order with the following information:

1) original denomination (for example, urban implantation, rural, kibbutz…);

2) political affiliation (for example, Federation of Colons tied to the ultra-nationalist Herout, religious nationalist Amana, Labor Takama…),

3) population,

4) governmental decisions (for example, creation or extension,

5) land status  (for example, public land, private Palestinian land, old Jewish property…),

6) survey of the illegal posts at the proximity of the colony, and

7) the status of expansion work validated by the Israeli Administration.

The mayors of these colonies stated that nothing was done without government approval or encouragement.  The colons understand that if asked to vacate then they will vacate because they know now that they have built on private lands.

What the newer Zionist colons in the last decades failed to be informed is that these implantation are major dumping grounds for noxious and toxic wastes of the Industrial/Military complexes in the State of Israel. 

The neighboring Palestinians have realized that fact the hard way for many years due to increasing heath problems.  Israel is a major military hardware exporter that surpassed Britain this year.  The other booming sectors in Israel’s economy are the human slave trade and drug trade around the world: Israel is one of the main Carrefour for illicit trades.

The funds for these illegal colonies came from the budget of the State of Israel, from the financial aids of the successive US Administrations that amounted to two billions dollars a year for over 50 years, and the contributions of the Zionist sympathizers in the US and Europe. 

Every penny spent on the colonies was known by the US governments and the State of Israel.  In addition to financial aids from the US and the European governments, Israel received yearly 3 billions dollars in military ultra modern hardware; Germany is still delivering new submarines, cruisers, and torpedo launchers to the Israeli naval forces, for free, at the expense of the German citizens’ welfare.

Note: The German cargo transporter “Wehr Elbe” discharged 300 containers of military ammunition in Israel. The irony is that the US is delivering White Phosphorous bombs that caused the outcry of the international community for being dropped consistently on Gaza and burning thousands of Palestinians.  The “Wehr Elbe” resumed its mission to delivering other military cargo in Odessa (Ukraine). 

The previous Bush Administration has signed an accord with Israel for 25 billion dollars in free military aids!


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

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