Islam, the final heavenly-revealed religion, is mistakenly accused of wronging women and not giving them all their due rights, an allegation which is extremely far from the truth. This article will attempt to refute this allegation through carefully examining the legal texts on that point.
In actuality, Islam firmly believes that woman is the counterpart of man, and that there is no difference whatsoever between each, an undeniable fact that is clearly recorded in the Quran, Muslims’ first source of legislation, and the Purified Sunnah, the second source of legislation in Islam.
If we carefully examine the Quran, we will easily reach the following conclusive proofs, as follows: -
1- In the Chapter of Al-Israa’, Allah, Glorified is He, states clearly that “And surely We have honored the children of Adam,” (The Quran, 17:70), affirming meanwhile that both men and women are honored by Him, Glorified is He.
2- In the Chapter of Al-Hujuraat, He, the Almighty, says: “O you men! Surely We have created you of a male and a female, and made you tribes and families that you may know each other; surely the most honorable of you with Allah is the one among you most careful (of his duty) …” (The Quran, 49:13), referring to the essential point that men and women are both required for the continuity of life on the surface of the earth. In other words, man alone cannot do that, neither can woman do that task alone. Also, this verse plainly points out that men and woman are totally equal concerning the religious obligations and duties as it maintains that the most honorable people- men or women- in the Sight of Allah are those who are most fearing of Him, the Almighty.
3- In the Chapter of Al-Ahzab, Allah, the Almighty, says: “Surely the men who submit and the women who submit, and the believing men and the believing women, and the obeying men and the obeying women, and the truthful men and the truthful women, and the patient men and the patient women and the humble men and the humble women, and the almsgiving men and the almsgiving women, and the fasting men and the fasting women, and the men who guard their private parts and the women who guard, and the men who remember Allah much and the women who remember-- Allah has prepared for them forgiveness and a mighty reward." (The Quran, 33:35), meaning that whoever does good deeds, whether a male or a female, will be greatly rewarded by Him, Glorified is He, a fact which is also supported by another verse in which He, the Almighty, says: “Whoever does good whether male or female and he is a believer, We will most certainly make him live a happy life, and We will most certainly give them their reward for the best of what they did.” (The Quran, 16:97) Verses with the same meaning has further been mentioned in the Chapters of Al-I‘mran, Al-Nisaa’ and Ghafir.
4- In the Quran, there is an independent chapter under the title of Al-Nisaa’ (The Women) wherein Allah, the Almighty, highlights some of the most important rights of women, including but not limited to, the right to inheritance, the right to have their own property, the right to dowry, etc. It also drives men’s attention to a number of prohibitions they must not do with women like not to unjustly take their dowry from them, not to harm them anyway, not to unjustly wrong them with their own property, etc.
5- The Quran has an independent chapter under the title of Maryam (Marry) in which Allah, the Almighty, tells us about her miraculous story of pregnancy and the miraculous birth of Jesus Christ (PBUH).
6- The Quran has an independent chapter under the title of Al-Talaaq (The Divorce) which highlights the various conditions of divorce that may take place between man and his wife.
In short, we can conclude that the Noble Quran views no difference at all between man and woman. On the contrary, it clearly declares that they are equal to each other, and that the only criterion of superiority for them all is Taqwa (fearing Allah).