Woman's Role


Junior Member
This is an excerpt from one of Farhat Hashmi’s interview. Interviewer is Farah Sadia. Its translated more or less meaning.

Interviewer: From Pakistan if you were to look at top 100 women she would be one of them. But if you were to ask me she should atleast be in top 10 because several women have benefited even women that live in far desolate areas have benefited listening to her cassettes, talks and her connection with Quran & Allah. Those women have come to know what Allah wants from them & how one ought to live their life. I have with me CEO and founder of Al Huda International Dr Farhat Hashmi.

I feel that lot of problems in our society are due to mothers not knowing how to raise, nurture their children. Given that a mother has such a high status what are responsibilities that come with it?

Farhat: As you mentioned, if the nucleus of anything is ruined then you can imagine what happens then? The foundation of any society is the home. The foundation of every home is cooperation & relationship between husband and wife. They both have dynamic role. In it the husband is responsible, wife is responsible

Narrated `Abdullah bin `Umar, Prophet (saw) said, “Everyone of you is a guardian and everyone of you is responsible (for his wards). A ruler is a guardian and is responsible(for his subjects); a man is a guardian of his family and responsible (for them); a wife is a guardian of her husband’s house and she is responsible (for it), a slave is a guardian of his master’s property and is responsible (for that). Beware! All of you are guardians and are responsible (for your wards). (Bukhari)

Everyone has form of responsibility and they will be held accountable to that responsibility. Specifically the woman is mentioned her being guardian of husband’s house and she would be accountable for this responsibility. Everyone of us being Muslim know that Allah has created us, we all have to return to Him and until our lives are not according to guidance that He has provided then there would be rifts whether its system at home, country or world, anywhere for that matter. Humans will not be able to thread the path properly. Because who knows us better than our own creator.

The problems in society are due to lot of factors. But it begins at nucleus, home. So I think we should all recognize each of our responsibilities.

Interviewer: Taking step back mother is a woman. What are the expectations from a woman? What are commandments for a woman? What should a woman do? Especially considering the times we live in that women are also getting secular education, added to which responsibilities Islam demands of her, how she ought to balance all that?

Farhat: Firstly a woman, she is a human being. She has her own unique identity. Allah has given her unique mind and personality. She has biological differences in comparison with man. She has special role. To fulfill that role whatever her foundational needs are such as spiritual, physical, mental even emotional needs. All of these need to be met. Then only one can develop their personality in holistic manner. If there is an imbalance there, she wont be able to fulfill her responsibilities then.

I think Islam doesn’t prevent anyone from gaining any form of knowledge. But its vital for her to know, as a woman, a girl that what are my responsibilities? So not just women but every human being first responsibility is they understand who their creator is, understand themselves (self aware) and understand their (responsibilities towards their) relations specially the close ones. Any type of education that will assist her in fulfilling those responsibilities will be means of her success. Her success is based on that. So if a woman has reached the heights of secular education, higher degrees but she neglected her personal grooming or training that degree wouldn’t benefit her.

Interviewer: What do you mean by personal grooming or training?

Farhat: I mean that as human being her personal needs, hygiene, health, basic habits that are indicative of one’s character, does she fulfill her role, it more or less encompasses everything. And if her spiritual grooming is not there such as her relationship with Allah, the void that comes with it human being will never be happy. And being a woman if she is not aware of her responsibilities then having big degree or other qualities will be useless. Because when she does something other than her role its unnatural and in that unnatural role she would go through difficulty & others wouldn’t be able to benefit from her.

Interviewer: The path where society is threading towards. You may have heard through international students that now there are more women in educational institutions than men. We are seeing an uptick in women becoming doctors, gaining professional degrees and becoming professionals. More women are of service the more successful they are. Now at home she is made to surrender, become subjugated, be obedient. But in her professional life its demanded from her that she possess leadership qualities be commanding, not be submissive but be assertive. How do you strike a balance? Role of good working woman & good wife it seems like there is an inconsistency?

Farhat: Every human being irrespective of where they work have to understand their role. When she is wife in house she has to play the role of wife. If she is at work she needs to fulfill the demands of her work. Then only she would be able to fulfill her responsibilities. One role shouldn’t dominate the other. If we are working as leader outside (doesn’t mean) we become a leader at home. For example I run an organization, I have different role there, I have to do many things there using different methods. But when I come home my role as a mother, my role as a wife how should I be? What does Allah want from me? Inherent nature that Allah has given me what are its demands? If I am aware and fulfilling my responsibilities then I don’t see there to be conflict.