Prayer. For Schools and Malls too
Majority of people in the world believe in an Omnipotent Being. Perhaps the reason why almost every session I have been to starts with a prayer, though seldom I understand its meaning. Despite the materialism and consumerism that are making strong inroads to our minds, we are still blessed to live in a Nation where every kind of inauguration, be it a school or a shopping mall, starts with a prayer.
However, it is much safer and sounder, for all things practical, to adopt the word Faith, in place of religion.
We all carry a Faith in God, a Being superior to us. When we have faith in something superior, our minds are trained and thoughts are disciplined.
Lions shouldn’t be lectured on courage. Nor Women on Empowerment
A Lion doesn’t need lecture on courage. Nor a Rose on beauty. Nor steel on strength. Why then do women need to be constantly admonished with sermons of empowerment?
Whoever framed the phrase women empowerment, it definitely sounds like women are intrinsically weak. Moreover, it is the worst form of oxymoron. In these words, one can smell a conspiracy of inherent gender discrimination. It is like saying a weak lion or an ugly rose.
Friends. When we do empower something? Only when it is originally weak. But are women so?
If women were actually weak, we would not sing or listen as much as we do about the Mothers of Holy Prophets Moses, Jesus, Muhammad. Do any one here know the husband of lady Haleema who nursed the Prophet?
Every famed thinker and writer imbibed their basics of language from the Mother. No one says my ‘father-tongue’ is so and so. But it is proudly called mother-tongue.
All this shows weakness or strength? It is only logical, then, that there is no need to empower something that is already strong.
Differentiating Religion from Religionists
However, there is a huge mess in the current state of affairs. The interpreters of religious laws are the culprits, not Religion, per se. There are reasons to believe that the situation would not have been the same had there been female intellectuals and reformers.
Self Underestimation: The Feminist Folly
The common question the conventional feminists pose is why can’t women be like men. The question presupposes women are inferior by birth. A rather interesting proposition would be why can’t men be like women?
Moulding children is a humungous task. Nature chose women, not men. If women make up her mind, there is nothing that stops her from achieving it. This is crystal-clear evident from the top women rank holders in the examination results. Yet, for some strange reason, she fails to score the same in the society she lives in. Nothing is to be blamed but her lack of perseverance.
Somewhere there is an underestimation of women, more so by their own breed than the men. They have to come out of that shell.
Knowledge empowers, not Information
One important area to focus on is reading and writing. Language is the mother of all knowledge.
Dr. Sheikh. Sultan, the ruler of Sharjah, had visited Kerala recently. When asked about his love for books, he responded that internet, TV and other media are good sources of information, but ‘books are printed in hearts but others fade away’.
We are fooled to believe that consumption of social media comprises reading. We are simply informed, not taught anything. There’s a huge difference between learning knowledge and being informed of something. Information will not empower us, knowledge does.
Kind Treatment of Women: Benchmark of Spirituality
I recently came across a widely forwarded meme, ‘if you treat your wife well, tomorrow they will treat your daughter well.’ It was the Prophet of Islam who reminded humanity that- the best believer is the one who is best to his wife.
Strange indeed, we might say, for a Prophet of God to define the benchmark of spirituality in the excellent treatment of women.
How well do our religionists score on this scale of women-friendly spirituality?
Highlights from Mujeeb Jaihoon’s talk at Ideal College for Advanced Studies, Thavanur, Malappuram District – Kerala. Oct 26 2017.