Facing The Ka'aba

November 29, 2013

Islamic Dressing: Don’t lose your identity

By Haroon Balogun

We are living in a society attacked by indecent and vulgar dresses. Westernisation and cultural adaptation have eroded our natural sense of decency in our mode of dressing. Day in day out we see new vogue and designers that expose the body parts of a woman all in the name of fashion and style.

Islam guides that clothing must be loose enough so as not to outline or distinguish the body curves. Skin-tight, body-hugging clothes are the vogue now and some Muslim women join the bandwagon in wearing such clothing to public places which is against the teaching of Islam. Some even with their cute hijab try to justify it by citing some inexcusable excuses.

They dressed up but still naked; they come up with funny fabrics that reveal what it is meant to be covering. Such kind of dresses serve the purpose of attracting the opposite sex and hence the way to zina (adultery and fornication). Such people are always abused and have no dignity.

These kinds of dressing are alien to Islam and we have to be proud about it. Muslims should look like Muslims, and not like others who always think their religion is superior but offers nothing to sense of morality and decency. Islamic dressing is not about head covering alone. The overall appearance of a Muslim should be dignified and modest. This may require a flashy and quality stuff but it must not be revealing. The dress should be full, covering the body parts. It is also important to note that Islamic dress requirements are not meant to be restrictive to one particular type, what is important is that you must have to be modest and neat. The Quran in Suratul-Ahzab 33:59 says: “O’ Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their veils over their bodies. That is most convenient that they should be recognised and not be molested”

Equally in an hadiths related by Abu Hurayra (r.a) narrates that the Prophet (s.a.w) said: “There are two types of people who will enter the Hell-fire: People having whips similar to ox-tails with which they will beat people, and women who will be dressed yet appear to be naked. They will seduce men and be inclined towards them. Their heads will be like the swaying humps of bacterial camels. They will neither enter paradise, nor smell its fragrance, even though its fragrance can be smelt from such and such distance.”

Just as behaviour and comportment set the tone for graceful interaction in the public, dressing and appearances also reinforce one’s image as a modest person which the Quran explains in the verse above.

We should note that the purpose of appearing in full Islamic manner is to earn recognition and to avoid molestation.  Many women who cover their hair and dress modestly do notice that men are more respectful and people are more inquisitive about their faith, so they are “recognized” not just as decent women but also as Muslims.

We should not allow the intolerance by non-Muslims regarding women’s dress to impede our relationship with God, the Creator.  Complying with the Islamic dress code is a matter of faith and one aspect of our identities, so, no matter the challenges, we must remain the Muslims that we are.