A woman is one of those blessings of Allah in the world that is a source of immeasurable trials same as power, knowledge, wealth and children. She could be the foundation or support or both, for enhancing goodness or evil. She could be loyal and dependable as a source of peace, solace, encouragement and inspiration for her husband.
Allah enjoins cleanliness; and beautification is not unIslamic. In respect of women, it should
specifically be for the attraction and satisfaction of the husband. Beautification is completely out of place for either men or women if the intent is to outwit one another or for the world to see. This becomes obvious where it is out of the ordinary convenience or regular mode of one’s outfit. Reference here is made to the keeping and disposition of the body by use of dress and makeup.
A woman’s dressing should be thick, loose, rhyming and fitting in terms of colour(s) but with no living thing as part of the design – preferably. A head tie, a veil and normal and just fitting shoes will complete a presentable woman. The use of undersized or high-heeled shoes, painting of the lips or upper eye lids will be out of modesty. Very bright colours like red should be avoided. The use of materials mentioned made of pure gold, silver, glass, diamond or silk are all permissible for women.
Same with men, a Muslim woman is required to be taught and to learn. What is primary and compulsory is religious knowledge, rules, standards, rites, rituals and practices. The absolute importance of this lies in the fact that she is expected to grow and be able to give children basic education and serve as a model. Such an embodiment makes the home safe for the young, protected from socialisation that is not of Islam.
Consequently, to enable children constantly reflect on the tenets of Islam, the parents should make efforts in aiding them relate all matters of life to the Islamic perspective. Their comments, observations, analysis and criticisms or curiosity need to be built on the guides given by the Qur’an and the traditions of the Prophet (S.A.W).
Time for marriage
By time is meant, when a woman becomes suitable and ready for marriage. The measurable part of it is the physical age. The modest take off point is from the experience of her first menstrual period. If the marriage comes before, there is no harm, but places more responsibility on the husband. If it is after, on the parents lie the risk of her exposure and participating in the sophisticated, complex and expanding world of tests. Those who opt for the time defined by after or the after of after are definitely only contributing unnecessary complexity for the Muslim community even if they keep to themselves.
The qualitative aspect of ‘time’ is mental maturity and orientation in at least the most basic terms or forms or levels. These are education in general and on marriage and the family in particular. It also covers a sufficient display of required manners and attitudes learnt from or by modelling after the mother, in relation to the father and children. For Muslim women, the definition of time by the completion of school, the securing of a job or getting married to a man that is single or one that has `settled’ are redefinitions. None of these is directly relevant to physical and mental preparedness for marriage.
Thus, it is the orientation of self-discipline supported by honesty, sincerity, patience, patience defining faith and reasonably measured by witnesses from within and without the family that is required of readiness for marriage when it combines with physical maturity.