Friday, September 29, 2006
Radio Ramadan 1
well yesterday I did my first show on the radio for this Ramadan and boy did it get heated.
nm, md and the revert came with me and so I knew that it was going to be an exciting and different show and seriously it was.
on Tuesday I had invited md to come on to the show and she agreed bless her and I asked her advice for a topic, instantly she said ' white African talk about the mosque issue'
of course, duh I should have realised, its a hot topic at the moment amongst my circle of friends because the mosque in our area where the majority of my friends live and where funnily enough is right behind my back garden, all I have to do is come out of the back gate and hey presto I'm at the mosque premises, any way this mosque does not allow sisters to pray, it would have been so convenient for us to pray tarawih prayers in our local mosque instead of having to treck all the way to town and risk our SAFETY (a word that kept cropping up on the radio).
just before Ramadan, md and the revert decided to pay our local mosque a visit and ask them politely if they would allow sisters to pray in the mosque, they where speaking to somebody concerning this when an older man pushed in and told them that THEY believe that woman have to pray at home and that's final, how rude!!!
well we will not stay quite about this and our voices will be heard, letters will be sent to the mosque, if that is ignored then we will petition the area as well as all Muslims in Manchester and if that does not work then protest out side the mosque will be the next step until we are given our rights as Muslim woman, what really saddens me is that the prophet pbuh did not prevent Muslim woman from praying in the mosque, so where did this mentality of preventing woman form the mosque come from? its not an Islamic mentality.
and this is why it was decided to talk about this issue on the radio, to raise awareness, well we had all met at Sanam restaraunt where MMU isoc where having there freshers iftar, we had just opened our fast and then had to dash away cause and bless the mmu committee they wouldn't let us leave without a take away of the dinner, which was delicious mashallah.
we got to the radio about 5 minutes late and started straight off, at the start it was a discussion between ourselves until the first caller called in, it was man and he was anti-woman praying in mosques, he kept asking us what was the need in us wanting to pray in a mosque, he understood our want but he wanted to know the need, want, need what difference does it make, the point us I want to pray tarawh or any of my fard prayers in a mosque.
what kept being mentioned was the hadith of the prophet pbuh which was that it is more rewarding for a woman to pray at home, fine I understand that but what the callers failed to mention was the hadith of the prophet where he (saw) said 'do not prevent woman from going to the mosque', but even though we mentioned this hadith over and over again some of the callers still turned a blind eye to it, frustrating or what.
one of the callers said that we don't have to go to the mosque any more because many mosques have a walki talky system so we can follow the imam from the comfort of our very homes and we do not need to risk our safety by leaving the house to walk to the mosque, because we all know that thousands of men are waiting round the corner ready to attack us, my god what planet are some people from????
it didn't help that 2 woman called in to the show in support of this mans statements, one of them would only speak in Arabic even though majority of listeners are English speakers, so I ha to play that role of translator, she called in to say that we should not step one foot into the mosque, that if I was looking for reward then I would follow the hadith of the prophet that says there is more reward in praying at home, she then moved on to say that it was dangerous for a woman to walk in the streets to go to the mosque, to which I repeatedly asked her whether she went shopping to which she would not answer my questions, so basically its ok to go shopping and what not because that's not dangerous, but to go to the mosque is????
she continued to say that we must accept that we are the weaker sex, that we are going against what god said - excuse me, granted we are created differenly physically but we are equal in the eyes of god in term of worship ibadah, but she still wouldn't accept this point. She then ended her conversation by saying that it is the duty of the maherm in our family to drop us of and pick up us from anywhere including going to uni, and that they should accompany us every where, yeh like they have nothing better to do, subhannallah.
we had another classic caller with a very strong scouser accent, bless her this lady did not listen to a single word we said, she rang accusing us of many thing we supposedly said when in fact such words did not even leave our mouths, pathetic really, she rang saying that she is sick and tired of these modern Muslims who come on the radio blah blah blah, the funny thing is that we are only asking for our god given rights so by asking for this we have been labeled 'modern Muslims' whatever, if following the prophet in the correct manner means being labeled modern so be it, bring it on I say.
she accused us of being feminists, sheeeeeech just because we want to pray in the mosque we have now been labeled as bra burning, armpit hair growing feminsists, see my point when I said she did not listen to us.
she said that we kept using the word liberated, walahi that word was not uttered from any of our mouths, I told her that the only liberation I want is to liberate my self as a Muslim from the fire of hell, to which she shouted 'my god, are you saying that if us Muslim woman don't pray in the mosque then we will be going to hell'
now does that sound like what I said, duh, NO, I was talking generally but it was pointless she refused to listen to any of us and continued to call us feminists, ok then...
we did have 2 supportive callers, one from a brother and another from a sister, so that was nice but to be honest I was expecting more calls of support but I guess like nm said, all our supporters are busy praying tarawih in mosques.
we ended the show with one more caller who I suspect was a previous caller but putting on a very strong Asian accent, he started by shouting 'HAAAARAAAAAAAAAAM' down the phone, 'it is HARAM for a woman to pray in the mosque' he then started to go on about how sisters these days wear rainbow coloured scarfs and wear d&g perfume, ??????????? and that such sisters should not be allowed into the mosques until they learn to dress appropriately and that includes niqab, and md bless her mentioned to him that there are difference of opinion concerning niqab but again it fell to deaf ears, he did big up Somali sisters by saying that they are good examples of how a Muslim woman should dress, which brought smiles to md and nm.
its funny but at the same time sad, you know when you reach a point of either laughing or crying, we chose to laugh yesterday but it's a serious issue and it really makes me sad to think that sisters are prevented from going to the mosque, its like the revert said, if it wasn't for the mosque that she attened she would never have reverted,
any brothers out there who are advocates of this ban woman from the mosque policy, please give us your reason because in all honesty no one has yet given us a reason, and don't bother mentioning the hadith that we get more reward praying at home, we know this alhamdullilah, the hadith does not say 'so don't you dare pray in the mosque' do not use the hadith in the wrong context.
I have rambled on enough, watch this space because it is not over yet...