Theme for 2014: Women In Islam

Women In Islam

In Islam, women have equal rights as men, both in spiritual and worldly matters. Men and women have complementary rights and responsibilities for which they will be answerable to God. God says in the Quran:

“O humankind! We created you from a male and a female,

and We made you races and tribes, for you to get to know each another.

The most noble of you in the sight of God

are those of you who are most conscientious.

And God is omniscient, fully aware.”

 ___The Private Chambers (49:13)

This theme has been selected to highlight the rights, status and accomplishments of Muslim Women through visual arts. The artists are required to compose their artwork without depiction of facial features and human forms. Abstract depictions and outlines of human forms are acceptable.


In Spiritual Matters:

In Islam there is absolutely no difference between men and women as far as their relationship to God is concerned, as both are promised the same reward for good conduct and the same punishment for evil conduct. They can attain to all those spiritual heights to which men can attain.

1. The Confederates (33:35)

“Surely, men who submit themselves to God and

women who submit themselves to Him,

and believing men and believing women,

and obedient men and obedient women,

and truthful men and truthful women,

and men steadfast in their faith and steadfast women,

and men who are humble and women who are humble,

and men who give charity and women who give charity,

and men who fast and women who fast,

and men who are chaste and women who are chaste

and men who remember God much and women who remember Him

– God has prepared for all of them forgiveness and a great reward.”

2. The Bee (16:97)

“Whoever does right, male or female,

and is a believer. We will give a good life,

and We will pay them their due

according to the best of what they have done.”


On Covering (Hijab):

The word “Hijab” comes from the Arabic word “hajaba” meaning to hide from view or conceal. Both Muslim men and women are required to dress modestly.

3. The Confederates (33:59)

“O Prophet, tell your wives, your daughters and the believing women

to put on their outer garments. That is most convenient so

they will be recognized and not molested.

God is very forgiving, most merciful.”


In Worldly Matters:

In Islam a woman is to be treated as God has endowed her, with rights, such as to be treated as an individual. She has the right to own and dispose of her own property and earnings, enter into contracts, even after marriage. She has the right to be educated and to work outside the home if she so chooses. She has the right to inherit from her father, mother, and husband.

 As Wife:

Before marriage, a woman has the right to choose her husband. Islamic law is very strict regarding the necessity of having the woman’s consent for marriage. The groom gives a marriage dowry to the bride for her own personal use. She keeps her own family name, rather than taking her husband’s. As a wife, a woman has the right to be supported by her husband even if she is already rich. She also has the right to seek divorce and custody of young children. She does not return the dowry, except in a few unusual situations. Marriage is based on mutual affection and mercy.

4. The Romans (30:21)

“And among the signs of God is having

created mates for you from yourselves

that you may feel at home with them;

creating love and compassion between you.

Surely there are signs in that for people who reflect.”


5. The Bee (16:72)

“And God made you mates from yourselves,

and has given you, children and grandchildren, from your mates

and has provided for you of the wholesome things.

Will they then believe in falsehood, denying the kindness of God?”


As Mother:

Islam commands kindness, respect and obedience to parents and specifically emphasizes and gives preference to the mother.

6. Luqman (31:14)

“We have entrusted man with the care of his parents:

His mother bore him, sapped and weakened,

and his weaning takes two years:

Be grateful to Me and to your parents; to Me is the destination.”


7. The Winding Sands (46:15)

“And We have enjoined on man goodness to his parents.

His mother carried him in distress and bore him in distress,

and his gestation and weaning takes thirty months.

Then when he attains his full maturity, reaching forty years,

he says, “My Lord, inspire me to be grateful for the kindness

You have bestowed on me and on my parents;

and to do good pleasing to You. And make righteous for me my offspring.

Indeed, I have repented to You, and indeed, I am of the Muslims.”

As Daughter:

In Pre-Islamic Arabia newborn girls were buried alive. Quran prohibited such killings. Even in some modern day cultures, daughters are considered a burden.

8. The Night Journey (17:31)

“Do not kill your children out of fear of poverty.

We will provide for them and for you.

Indeed, killing them is a great sin.”

 9. The Bee (16:58-59)

“When one of you is given news of the birth of a female,

his face darkens and he grieves within:

he hides himself from the people out of distress

at the news he’s given; Shall he keep it, in spite of ignominy,

or shall he bury it in the dust?

Oh! what an evil decision they make!”


Women mentioned in Quran:


Mariam is also known as Mary, the mother of the Prophet Jesus. She is the only woman mentioned by name in the Quran. Her story is told in many different verses, and the 19th chapter of the Quran is also named for her.

10. Family of Imran (3:42)

And remember when the angels said:

“O Mary, Allah has chosen you and purified you,

and chosen you over the women of all peoples”.

11. Prohibition (66:12)

And Mary, daughter of Imran, who defended her chastity,

so We breathed some of Our spirit into her,

and she confirmed the pronouncements and

the scriptures of her Lord, and she was among the devout.”


Also known as Eve, was the wife of Adam, and they were both created directly by God.

12. Women (4:1)

“O humankind, be conscious of your Lord, who created you

from one soul, and created its mate from it,

and propagated from the two many men and women.

And be conscious of God, by whom you ask of each other;

and of relationships; for God is watching you.”


In Islamic tradition, Sara is the wife of Abraham who gave birth to Isaac in her later years.

13. Hud (11:71-73)

“And his wife who was standing there, laughed;

but We announce to her good news

of Isaac and of Jacob, after Isaac.

She said, “Woe is me! Shall I give birth now

that I am an old woman and my husband an old man?

This is indeed a strange thing!”

They said, “Do you marvel at the order of God?

The mercy and blessings of God are on you,

people of the house.

Truly, God is most praiseworthy, most glorious.”


Also known as Hajar in English, she was a younger wife of Abraham who gave birth to Ishmael. During the annual pilgrimage (Hajj), Muslims reenact her desperate search for water between the Safa and Marwa mountains.

14. The Cow (2:155 – 158)

“We will surely test you with something of fear and hunger,

and a loss of possessions person or crops.

But give good news to the patient,

those who say, when calamity afflicts them,

“We belong to God and to God we return.”

They are the ones upon whom are blessings

from their Lord and mercy;

And they are the ones who are guided.

Note that the mountains Safa and Marwa are among

the emblems of God: whoever makes

the seasonal pilgrimage to the House

or an off-seasonal pilgrimage –

it is not held against anyone if he circles them both.

And if anyone willingly does what is good,

God is appreciative and cognizant.”


Asiya was described as the wife of Pharaoh, who cared for Moses after his rescue as an infant. She protected Moses and stood up for him in front of her husband.

15. Prohibition (66:11)

And God has made an example for those who believe

of the wife of Pharaoh, when she said,

“My Lord, build for me a house in Your presence

in the Garden and rescue me from Pharaoh

and his course of action, rescuing me from the tyrannical people.”