Actual Opinion

Sunday, 06 November 2022

Mary the Holy Woman

This is the image of a woman named Mary, who became a symbol of a holy woman and was respected by all religions, including Islam.The image is the result of a modern century painting which is an imitation of her original image of Panagia Protaitissa drawn by Luke directly in front of Maryam herself during her lifetime.

And then the following are the words of the angel Gabriel sent by Allah swt and recorded in the holy book of the Quran before Mary:

وَاِذۡ قَالَتِ الۡمَلٰٓٮِٕكَةُ يٰمَرۡيَمُ اِنَّ اللّٰهَ اصۡطَفٰٮكِ وَطَهَّرَكِ وَاصۡطَفٰٮكِ عَلٰى نِسَآءِ الۡعٰلَمِيۡنَ
“And (remember) when the angels said, "O Mary! Indeed, Allah has chosen you, sanctified you, and preferred you above all women in all the worlds.” (QS 3:42)

So Mary in Islam is a holy woman and Allah swt exaggerates her above all women in all nature. Even his name is used as one of the names of the letters in the Quran, namely the 19th letter, the letter of Mary. In the letter are told several stories about prophets and apostles such as Zakariya as, Yahya as, Ibrahim as, Moses as and equally important is the story of Mary, the holy woman who later conceived the baby of Jesus as. The only woman who is so detailed is told her story in the Quran which tells a lot about men. The wisdom behind this is perhaps that the women of the days afterwards should model the obedience and chastity of Mary in worshipping and carrying out the duties of Allah swt.

Well, let's take another look at the picture of Mary, is there anything awkward? Let's look back again, is there anything unusual? Yes, that's right, Mary doesn't wear a hijab. Her half-curly hair was clearly visible under her simple veil.

Among all the women in this realm, allah swt chose this woman, Mary, a woman who does not wear a hijab. Why?

My brethren, let us momentarily use our common sense, as Allah swt commands in the Quran to use reason. Mary was just wearing a veil because indeed the hair on the head was not aurat. Aurat is something that, if seen, will cause shame to the owner, arouse lust for those who see it and cause social chaos when freely indulged and shown. Will the hair on the head when shown cause embarrassment? Will it arouse lust for those who see it? Will showing hair on the head cause social chaos? The answer is no, isn't it?

The hijab is a necessity and obligation applied to a society in Arabia at a time and in a particular socio-cultural condition. Let us examine again how Allah swt gives a statement in the holy book of the Quran about the hijab.

يٰۤـاَيُّهَا النَّبِىُّ قُلْ لِّاَزۡوَاجِكَ وَبَنٰتِكَ وَنِسَآءِ الۡمُؤۡمِنِيۡنَ يُدۡنِيۡنَ عَلَيۡهِنَّ مِنۡ جَلَابِيۡبِهِنَّ ؕ ذ
ذٰ لِكَ اَدۡنٰٓى اَنۡ يُّعۡرَفۡنَ فَلَا يُؤۡذَيۡنَ ؕ وَكَانَ اللّٰهُ غَفُوۡرًا رَّحِيۡمًا

“O Prophet! Say to your wives, your daughters and the wives of believers, "Let them cover their headscarves all over their bodies." This is so that they are easier to be recognized, so that they are not disturbed. And Allah is All-Forgiving, All-Merciful.” (QS 33:59)

The author deliberately underlines the sentence on the word of Allah swt to confirm the intention of closing the hijab to the whole body for what. Try to read it again carefully, and if necessary, reopen the interpretation of this verse of the Quran. Does the hijab of this verse mean to cover the aurat? No, right? The intention was that they might be easy to recognize, because indeed in those days arab men could not recognize which was the wife of the Prophet, which was the wife and children of the faithful and which was the slave.

Let us consider another verse of the Quran that is often associated with this hijab.

وَقُلْ لِّـلۡمُؤۡمِنٰتِ يَغۡضُضۡنَ مِنۡ اَبۡصَارِهِنَّ وَيَحۡفَظۡنَ فُرُوۡجَهُنَّ
وَلَا يُبۡدِيۡنَ زِيۡنَتَهُنَّ اِلَّا مَا ظَهَرَ مِنۡهَا وَلۡيَـضۡرِبۡنَ بِخُمُرِهِنَّ عَلٰى جُيُوۡبِهِنَّ
وَلَا يُبۡدِيۡنَ زِيۡنَتَهُنَّ

"And say unto the women of faith, that they keep their sights, and keep their cocks, and do not show their adornments (their aurat), except those which are (commonly) visible. And let them put a veil over his breast, and do not reveal his jewels (his aurat)..." (QS 24:31)

This is a verse from the Quran that commands that the veil cover her chest. Is the verse telling us that the hair on the head is aurat? Not so is it? The verse commands that the hooded woman cover their chests, for indeed the woman's chest is among the aurat. It can be covered with a veil, it can be with a headscarf, or also with clothes.

My brethren, in the Quran it is also asserted that the device used to cover the aurat is clothing, not a headscarf. Take a look at the following verses from the Quran:

يٰبَنِىۡۤ اٰدَمَ قَدۡ اَنۡزَلۡنَا عَلَيۡكُمۡ لِبَاسًا يُّوَارِىۡ سَوۡاٰتِكُمۡ وَرِيۡشًا ؕ وَلِبَاسُ التَّقۡوٰى ۙ ذٰ لِكَ خَيۡرٌ
ذٰ لِكَ مِنۡ اٰيٰتِ اللّٰهِ لَعَلَّهُمۡ يَذَّكَّرُوۡنَ

“O posterity of Adam! Verily We have provided garments to cover your aurat and for your jewellery. But takwa clothes, that's what's better. Such are some of the signs of God's dominion, hopefully they remember.” (QS 7:26)

Again, this paper is intended as an alternative to understanding and believing about the hijab amid the rampant aggression of thought from middle eastern people's understanding of the hijab. That there is actually a group of Muslims who understand and believe that the hair on the head is not aurat so thus wearing the hijab is not mandatory. Well, this group has existed among Muslims from the past to the present, and this group wants their opinions, understandings and beliefs to be respected and valued, just as they also respect and respect women who currently wear the hijab.

The following is a hadith narrated by Aisyah ra in the Hadith of the History of the Judge and judged Shahih by ad-Dzahabi according to Muslim requirements: "There are four women leaders of heaven: Mary binti Imran, Fatimah binti Rasulillah sallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam, Khadijah binti Khuwailid, and Asiyah (wife of Pharaoh)." Well, brothers, of the four women in the hadith earlier, only Fatimah binti Rasulullah saw who wore the hijab, the rest did not. So the logic is, if these women show their aurat, where is it possible that they are the master women of heaven? Let us use our common sense, that the hair on the head is not aurat.

Next, we try to show an old portrait of the Buya Hamka family, one of the famous Muslim figures in Indonesia whose speeches and lectures are widely used as role models for the Muslim community in Indonesia. Try to pay attention, do these women wear headscarves? No, right? Likewise with Cut Nyak Dhien, the heroine of Aceh, Cut Meutia, Raden Dewi Sartika, Hajjah Rangkayo Rasuna Said and even Nyai Ahmad Dahlan, the wife of Kyai Ahmad Dahlan, the founder of Muhammadiyah.

Thus this paper was made with the intention of explaining a little that there is an alternative opinion and understanding developing among Muslims that the hijab is not mandatory. And actually there are indeed some other things that are actually much more important and more obligatory to apply in the life of a Muslim / Muslim woman than wearing a hijab, such as having faith and obeying correctly, being honest and fully responsible for the mandate, or spreading affection so that Islam is truly accepted as a teaching that brings mercy to all nature. These things are much more essential and more important than wearing a headscarf, keeping a beard or wearing a cropped pants.

So, let us all Indonesians continue to move forward, welcoming the glory that is already on the horizon. Don't want to be divided by narrow understanding. All Muslim women, whether wearing the hijab or not, are brothers and believers. We are all united, all are the people of Prophet Muhammad saw. (AK)