Whether you are visiting an Islamic nation, interacting regularly with a Muslim woman or thinking about converting religions, you should treat Muslim women with respect. According to the Qur’an, men and women were created equally–it is only in practice that women may be treated as lesser beings in some countries. In general, however, you should afford women the same respect as men.
1. Treat Muslim women with respect. The Islamic prophet Muhammad treated each of his wives with dignity, giving them rights equal to his own. This was remarkable in a time when women around the world were afforded no rights at all. Islamic women were (and still are) allowed to initiate divorce, control their earnings and keep their maiden names.
2. Allow Muslim women to practice religious beliefs without fear of prejudice. Do not discriminate against a woman because she chooses to wear the traditional dress or head coverings. Many young people voluntarily follow the dress code while still working in modern jobs.
3. Honor an Muslim woman’s right to modesty. Avoid purposely making her feel uncomfortable by asking her to remove head coverings or make eye contact.
4. Protect women on the street, so that they are not molested or looked upon salaciously by other men. You should watch over your family, according to the Qur’an, defending a woman’s honor when necessary. In turn, you should not ogle women.
4. Provide for your wife. In Muslim cultures, a Muslim woman keeps her dowry and earnings to spend as she sees fits. It is up to the man to provide for the family, which includes his wife and children.
6. Treat you wife as your equal in both intellect and sexuality. According to the Qur’an, an Muslim woman should be obedient without being submissive to her husband.
7. Avoid trying to “save” Muslim women simply because of their religion. The majority of Muslim women choose to continue practicing their conservative beliefs, including wearing the elaborate garbs.
More to follow soon.