You’ve probably already heard that Sinead O’Connor has converted to Islam. But the problem is, I don’t think she really understands what that means. Why I say that is because of the following response on Twitter by one Lalo Dagach:
You see, the religion of Islam is founded upon three sources: The Qur’an (the original Arabic words of revelation that Mohammed received from Allah), the Sira (the biography of Mohammed) and the Hadith (the traditions of Mohammed). And what follows then is a summary of what each of these Islamic writings say about the place and role of women.
It should be noted that Muslims would argue that their Scriptures can only be properly understood when read in the original Arabic. And so, they don’t see what I have reproduced as authoritative since it is an English translation. If you’re interested, then you might want to also check out the work of Samuel Green and Dr Bill Warner. The referencing to these primary sources, though, is as follows:
2, 218 is a reference to Bukhari’s Interpretation of the Qur’an, chapter 2, verse 218.
B2, 3, 5 is a reference to Sahih Bukhari, volume 1, book 3, number 4.
M014, 2345 is a reference to Sahih Muslim, book 14, number 2345
1 Most of those in Hell will be women
B1, 2, 28 Mohammed said, “I have seen the fires of Hell and most of its residents are ungrateful women.” He was asked, “Are they Kafirs [unbelievers], or did they show ingratitude to Allah? He answered, “They were not grateful to their husbands and not grateful for the kindness shown to them.”
2 Women can be physically disciplined by men
4, 34 Men have authority over women because God has made the one superior to the other, and because they spend their wealth to maintain them. Good women are obedient. They guard their unseen parts because God has guarded them. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them, forsake them in beds apart, and beat them. Then if they obey you, take no further action against them.
4, 11 Allah commands you as regards your children’s (inheritance): to the male, a portion equal to that of two females.
3 Women are intellectually deficient
B3, 31, 172 Mohammed: “Is it not a fact that women do not pray or fast during menstruation? That is the deficiency in her religion?”
B3, 48, 826 Mohammed asked, “Is not the value of a woman’s eye-witness testimony half that of a man’s?” A woman said, “yes.” He said, “That is because a woman’s mind is deficient.”
B1, 6, 301 While on his way to pray, Mohammed passed a group of women and he said, “Ladies, give to charities and donate money to the unfortunate, because I have witnessed that most of the people in Hell are women.
They asked, “Why is that?
He answered, “You swear too much, and you show no gratitude to your husbands. I have never come across anyone more lacking in intelligence, or ignorant of their religion than women. A careful and intelligent man could be misled by many of you.”
They responded, “What exactly are we lacking in intelligence or faith?”
Mohammed said, “Is it not true that the testimony of one man is the equal to the testimony of two women?”
After they affirmed that this was true, Mohammed said, “That illustrates that women are lacking in intelligence. Is it not also true that women may not pray nor fast during their menstrual cycle?” They said that this was also true.
Mohammed then said, “That illustrates that women are (deficient) lacking in their religion.”
4 Women are a threat/problem to men spiritually
M036, 6603 Mohammed: “After I am gone, the biggest threat to stability that will remain is the harm done to men by women.”
B7, 62, 33 Mohammed: “After I die, the biggest problem that I leave to man is woman.”
M004, 1032 Mohammed said, “If any of you stand for prayer with an object as big as a saddle’s rear in front of you, or if an ass, a woman, or a black dog passes in front of you, your prayer will be blocked.”
B1, 9, 490 I [Aisha, Mohammed’s favourite wife] was told of several things that can negate a prayer. I was told, “Prayer is nullified by a dog, an ass, or a woman that passes before people in prayer.” I said, “You have turned women into dogs.”
5 Women are inherently crooked, and not as “free” as men
B7, 62, 113 Mohammed: “A woman is like a rib; if you try to straighten her out, she will break. To get any benefit from her, you must leave her crooked.”
2, 226 Women shall with justice have rights similar to those exercised against them, although men have a status above women.
B2, 20, 192 Mohammed: “A woman should not travel for more than three days unless accompanied by her husband, or a man whom she cannot marry, like her father, brother, or grandfather.”
B2, 20, 194 Mohammed: “A woman who believes in Allah and the Day of Reckoning may not travel for more than one day unaccompanied by a close male relative.”
6 A husband’s sexual desire must always be met
B7, 62, 81 Mohammed said, “the marriage vow most rightly expected to be obeyed is the husband’s right to enjoy the wife’s vagina.”
B7, 62, 121 Mohammed: “If a woman refuse her husband’s request for sex, the angels will curse her through the night.”
M008, 3367 Mohammed: “If a man wishes to bed his wife and she refuses, Allah will be displeased with her until her husband is pleased with her.”
7 Judicial punishment is sometimes different for men and women
B3, 49, 860 A nomad and another man came before Mohammed, seeking his solution to a dispute.
The nomad said to Mohammed, use Islamic law to settle our dispute.” The other man said, “Yes, we will abide by Allah’s law as you dictate.”
The nomad began, “My son worked for this man and he fornicated with the man’s wife. Some people said that he must be stoned to death; to save him from that punishment, I paid a penalty of one hundred sheep and one slave girl. Then I asked some Islamic scholars who said, “Your son must be given one-hundred lashes and be exiled one year.”
Mohammed said, “I will settle this dispute using Allah’s law. Your son must be exiled for one year, and he must be lashed one hundred times. The slave-girl and the one hundred sheep will be returned to you.” Mohammed then turned to the companion and said, “Unais, seize this man’s wife. She must be stoned to death.” Consequently, Unais went and stoned the woman to death.
8 Men can take child brides and have multiple wives
B5,58,234;B5,58,236;B7,62,64;B7,62,65;B7,62,88;B7,62,90 Mohammed became engaged to Aisha when she was six years old. She then went to Medina and stayed at the home of Bani-al-Harith, where she got ill and lost her hair. After her hair grew back by the age of nine, her mother handed her to the care of some women, who prepared her for her marriage to Mohammed. He consummated his marriage with her when she was nine years old and she remained with him for nine more years until his death.
4, 3 And if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with the orphan-girls then marry (other) women of your choice, two, or three, or four.
9 Women captured through Jihad could be taken as “temporary wives”
B7, 62, 130 Abdullah said, “While on jihad with Mohammed, many of us did not have wives accompanying us. We asked whether we should get castrated?” Mohammed ordered us not to do that, and he gave us permission to take temporary wives before reciting this verse.
5.87 O, you who believe, do not forbid the good things that Allah allows you, but do not commit excess for Allah does not love those who commit excess.
It is permissible to have sexual intercourse with a captive woman after she is purified (of menses or delivery). In case she has a husband, her marriage is abrogated after she becomes captive. [Hadith of Muslim, chapter 29, book 8]
10 Mohammed taught that women should not alter their natural appearances.
B7, 72, 815 Allah’s curse is on women that either give or receive tattoos; those that pluck their facial hair and those that do anything to alter their natural appearance.
B7, 62, 133 A woman from the Helpers had a daughter whose hair began to fall out soon after she became wed. The woman asked Mohammed his advice saying, “My daughter’s husband suggests that she wear a wig.” Mohammed said, “Don’t let her do that. Allah curse women who wear artificial hair.”
33, 59 O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies…That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed.
Now, while I’m aware that some Muslim women—such as Yassmin Abdel-Magied—claim that Islam is “the most feminist religion”, it is difficult to see how that can legitimately be the case. But regardless of what various people claim, I really don’t think Sinead O’Connor fully understands the faith that she has submitted herself to. Because if O’Connor did, then she definitely wouldn’t be singing the ‘call to prayer’.
Mark Powell is the Associate Pastor of Cornerstone Presbyterian Church, Strathfield.
Illustration: Sinead O’Connor/Twitter
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