By: Syed Mustafa Ahmad
Since time immemorial, women have been exploited in one way or another. They have been treated inhumanely at every moment. Their presence was as a source of shame. They were no better than an animal. We can blame them for not being civilized. But at the present moment, women are still being treated inhumanely. Today, we have reached the pinnacles of development but something is missing miserably that should have given women the due that they are entitled to. What are the causes responsible for this situation and what is the way out of this mess? It will be discussed in this article.
The first cause is that we have prejudices and stereotypes. In the long history of the world, it had crept somewhere that women were not fit to live. If they were, they would not be better than an animal. They always were to keep under a strict watch. They would have no say in society. Moreover, for their development, they would remain dependent on the rules and regulations, made by men. In the present world, the same is happening again. Women still are at the lowest ebb. They have no say in society. They can’t make their own decisions. They are dictated by others. Socially, economically, politically, ethically, etc., they are subservient to men. Second is that the religious and non-religious books are distorted in the name of women subjugation. Deliberately, the divine principles are distorted to appease men. God is being said to men that it is the duty of men to enslave women to keep society on the roads right track. This kind of mindset has proved false in the past and is also proving false in the contemporary world. How can a single Creator distinguish between a man and a woman based on some peripheral differences? When the basics are same, there remains no ground for distinguishing between a man and a woman. It is this crooked version of religious and non-religious scriptures that have enslaved women since a long time ago.
The third is that women menstruate and produce babies. This taboo of menstruation has made the lives of women hellish. Everywhere they face humiliation because their bodies produce blood through private parts. I am amazed at this thinking because all the people of the world are nourished on this so-called dirty blood. When this blood is dirty then all the male in the world are dirty. Sanitary pads are looked through the eyes of suspicion. They are kept behind curtains so that they are not seen by the orthodox society. Moreover, women are generally called the producers of babies. Fourth and last cause is that in our society, legal things are never discussed while illegal things are discussed and debated everywhere. There should have been continuous discussions over issues that haunt us day in and day out. Menstruation, sexual intercourses, puberty, pregnancy, etc., should have been discussed. Illegal sex should have been taught to every girl and a boy. Teenage sex should have been abhorred if there had been enlightened persons in our society. Parents should have discussed sex with their children. A mother should have been teaching her daughter why you do menstruate. What is the way to be followed when you have sexual desires? In the same vein, a father should have been teaching his son that what the nocturnal emissions are. What is a wet dream? What is the way to be followed in case of a sexual desire? What to do if a girl or a boy feels attracted towards a boy and a girl respectively? When these things are not discussed, the society itself pursues the path of orthodoxy and the result is that women, instead of boys, get exploited. In the case of Prophet Muhammad ( PBUH), he used to discuss the so-called private things openly. He didn’t keep any curtain between the public and the private things. He taught his Companions that a girl also goes through nocturnal emissions like a boy. Let us know about remedial measures.
The first remedial measure is that we should leave prejudices and stereotypes. It will help in maintaining a good environment of learning from each other. Moreover, it will help us a lot in respecting women. Second is that the religious and non-religious scriptures should be reinterpreted. They should be given a second thought. The truth should be applied in society. If it goes against the wishes of men, there should be no compromise on this. Why to hide the truth if it is in the favour of women? The third is that menstruation and producing babies are from divinity. We can’t go against it. Menstruation keeps a women’s health fit and kicking. Irregularity in the emission of blood or irregular periods can prove disastrous. If a man’s blood in the battlefield earns him Paradise, the same blood earns her shame. What a paradox! This paradox has to be removed. If in case of an emergency, a woman’s blood can save the life of a man, why man speaks foul of her after some time.
Fourth and last remedial measure is that there should be an open discussion over things that are so-called private. Men and women should discuss each other’s issues. There should be no privacy. If I have sexual desire, I should talk it freely. Why bury it? It is my need. I can’t control it long. I will be forced to have illegal sex if it is not discussed. Last but not the least, it is the responsibility of everyone to give women what they are entitled to. They are enlightening themselves day by day. We can’t keep them in dark for a long time. They should be taken into account. They should be listened to. They should be treated humanely. They need our care. They need our love. They are alone in a crowd. They hide their tears. Their tears have worth. They should be rated accordingly. Let us try our best to give them what they are created for.