Saturday, July 18, 2009

Menstruation and Religious Duties


Funny topic eh? Appears so... but it is not.

Ask any muslim woman whether she performs religious duty (say prayers) while she is menstruating and she will reply 'No'. The common knowledge is that the state of menstruation is 'unclean' so one has to stay away from religious duties. To approach them one requires 'cleanliness and purity' so when she is menstruating, its good-bye prayers, fasting, pilgrimage etc. This prevents women from performing their religious duties even if they want to. How is it possible that you and God are incommunicado for 5-6 days? If HE is the creator, HE should have seen this coming!

The only trouble for me is.. that it is no where mentioned in the Quran that a woman is not allowed to say her prayers when she is menstruating. Yes menstruation is mentioned in Quran but its only in the context of sexual intercourse and that it should not be done.

2:222 - they ask thee concerning women's courses. Say: They are a hurt and a pollution: So keep away from women in their courses, and do not approach them until they are clean. But when they have purified themselves, ye may approach them in any manner, time, or place ordained for you by Allah.

Now one would assume that since menstruation is 'unclean' so naturally prayers are out of question. Interestingly, the verse that mentions the preparatory phase of prayers also includes the 'state' wherein a prayer is not allowed - and that does not mention menstruation.

05:06 - O ye who believe! when ye prepare for prayer, wash your faces, and your hands (and arms) to the elbows; Rub your heads (with water); and (wash) your feet to the ankles. If ye are in a state of ceremonial impurity, bathe your whole body. But if ye are ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from offices of nature, or ye have been in contact with women, and ye find no water, then take for yourselves clean sand or earth, and rub therewith your faces and hands, Allah doth not wish to place you in a difficulty, but to make you clean, and to complete his favour to you, that ye may be grateful.

Checked the highlighted words? It means that if anyone, regardless of gender, has had sexual intercourse then he/she requires bathing. That is the only condition. It no where mentions menstruation.

Check another verse.

4:43 - O ye who believe! Approach not prayers with a mind befogged, until ye can understand all that ye say,- nor in a state of ceremonial impurity (Except when travelling on the road), until after washing your whole body. If ye are ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from offices of nature, or ye have been in contact with women, and ye find no water, then take for yourselves clean sand or earth, and rub therewith your faces and hands. For Allah doth blot out sins and forgive again and again.

Still no indication that God has disallowed women not to perform religious duties while menstruating.

Mind you, I am not talking about whether women should pray while in that situation. Not everyone of them can because its too hard for them to do anything but those women who want to perform their religious duties, there should be no 'religious injunction' prohibiting them to do so.

Related Posts

- Can You Touch The Quran When Unclean?
- A Woman's Witness Value Worth half of Men?
- Can A Woman Be An Imam?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Why Pants Are Not Shariah Compliant

Pants are not shariah compliant because they do not hold the same amount of air that a shalwar* would hold when your blow air into it to remain afloat in turbulent waters**.

That is the only reason I can come up with.

*shalwar - baggy pants that Pakistani men usually wear.

** If you fill shalwar with air and then immerse in water, you remain afloat. Common technique used by amateur Pakistani swimmers when swimming in ponds or river. See Pic No. 20. P.S: Awesome pictures by Boston Globe. A Must See.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Pakistani Cricket and Erectile Dysfunction

Pakistani cricket team is afflicted with Erectile Dysfunction syndrome. They cant make a stand when its needed.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Exam Phobia

I was/am not a good student. I was not that type that prepared notes, listened actively to what the teacher was saying, 'competed' with the top notch students.. never did any of that thing. The maximum position I got was 6th I guess in my class and that was not even the Final exams. The worst if I can remember was 16th position. So I was one of those that teachers do not remember. They only remember the good and the bad. Thank God my mama does not consider me 'ugly' and I'll take that as a popular opinion too.

The way i fared in exams was due a lot to way my father approached it:p He never ever asked me to 'do excellently' in exams. He had only one question to ask 'Did you clear?' and my answer was always 'yes'. Thats it. I do not know whether it was a good thing or a bad thing for me because it definitely had one impact one me - I got no exam pressure. The bad thing, 'perhaps', is that I never got serious for exams. You know, good students get opportunities kinda stuff?

Talking of exam pressure, different people get different treatment 'from' exams. Some get tense, some people cant sleep, some people have upset stomach.. mine was pecuilar. I got abundant supply of sleep! If i sleep around 12 at midnight, in exam days I would be asleep at around 10! I have absolutely no idea why! Perhaps it was my escapism but whatever the case, most of the times I would want to sleep. In the most important exam of a pakistani student, the 10th grade Final exam (board exam) is considered to be the first major battle. I remember, in preparation for this exam, I had a small diary with me alongside a transistor! yup you read that right, a god damn radio! I had noted all the frequencies of various radio channels. Apparently, i was not just content with that because I had also 'drawn' the frequencies with needle position alongside the noting!

The country's elitist exam, perhaps, the Civil Superior Services - I gave that too. People spend almost a year preparing for it. How did I prepare for it? A month before when the datesheet for exams came. Thats the reason I could not make it to top 100. Thats the reason I am writing this blog post :p

The approach to exams did change I must admit. Since my arrival in professional world and in this day and age of competition, one is forced to take professional certification exams. And they cost like hell! I have undertaken more than a couple of them and man they require more than a weeks preparation! Money is after all thicker than everything! I was not afraid of the exam but the thought of losing such humongous amount of money made me quiver! One is tempted to ask "why the hell did I do so?".

I believe our older generations were much better than ours. Seriously. They finished school, college and university. Thats it. No more studies. To hell with exams and everything. We, on the other hand, keep singing this song.. 'imtihan hay, tera imtihan hay'.


Monday, July 06, 2009

Me, Myself, Appraisal & Boss

(with due respects to Rafi and Aasha Bhosle)

Boss: kya daikhtay ho...
Me: soorat tumhari..
Boss: kya chahtay ho...
Me: chahat tumhari... (good rating)
Boss: 'na' hum jo keh dain..
Me: keh na sako gi.. (dumbass. You have already said No)
Boss: lagti nahi theek niyyat tumhari (Me: of course! I want to skin you alive!)

Saturday, July 04, 2009