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Family: Distribution Of Duties


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Mufti Taqi (Damat Barakutuhum) states in his discourses


Men and Women are two different sexes.
A great hue and cry is being raised now-a-days that women should also work side by side with men. In the zeal of their ceaseless propaganda, they have failed to reflect that if men and women were created for doing the same kind of work why was it necessary to create them with different physical characteristics and bodily constitutions. Who can deny the fact that men and women have different bodily systems, habits, sentiments, susceptibilities and mental trends. Allah has created each sex with different constitutions. To declare that there is no difference between men and women is self-deception and revolt against nature, because it is disbelieving our eyes and our senses. The difference between the physical constitution and sentimental trends of each cannot be effaced by artificial means, i.e., by putting on the same dress, having the same hair-style. The fact remains that the difference between men and women is too palpable to be denied and too real and true to be ignored.

The means to put a question to Allah are His Prophets.
As already pointed out it is the Creator Himself who can tell for what purpose He created men and women and one can approach the creator for an answer through His Prophets, the last of them being Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and grant him peace).

Two branches of Human life
It appears, without any shadow of doubt, from the teachings of the Holy Qur'an and the Holy Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) that human life stands divided into two branches, viz., the indoor affairs and the outdoor affairs. Each branch is complimentary to the other. It is not possible to lead a balanced and moderate life without taking into account, and meeting the requirements of both the branches of life. It is equally important and necessary to plan and procure the indoor as well as the outdoor demands of life. Man's life can be stabilized and regulated with the help of these two branches. If one branch is ignored or preferred to the other, life will get shattered, disorganized and unbalanced.

Distribution of duties between men and women
Allah has distributed the duties between two sexes in such a way that men have been made responsible for outdoor duties, e.g. earning livelihood and looking after political and social affairs and women have been made responsible for all indoor duties. If an intelligent survey is made of the natural peculiarities of man's creation it will have to be admitted that there can be no better arrangement of the distribution of duties between men and women. None can deny that in physical constitution man is stronger than woman. Outdoor work demands more strength and endurance which has been bestowed upon man. Outdoor duties demanding physical and muscular strength can be discharged efficiently only by man power and not by woman power. As regards indoor duties which are easier and which require less physical strength have been rightly entrusted to women.

A woman should take charge of household duties
The Qur'anic verse which was quoted in the beginning contains a divine command addressed direct to the sacred wives of the Holy Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) and indirectly to the entire community of Muslim women. The command is:

“O wives of the Prophet, stay in your houses.”

This does not mean to say that women should not go out of their houses, except in emergent conditions. The verse points out to a basic truth to the effect that women should stay in their houses and look after all indoor household affairs...

The child needs its mother's care and affection.
Allah has created women to take over the duties of bringing up and training the children on the right lines and putting them on the right trend of thought. That is why Allah has put in the heart of the mother more love for the child than in that of the father, although the child belongs to both, when the child feels some discomfort he will at once call its mother and not its. father, wherever she may be. because the child knows well that it is its mother who can remove its discomfort. The child is brought up in the shadow of this affectionate relation. It is not possible for a father to breed and bring up his child without the assistance of the mother. Actual experiment will support this statement. Nowadays people submit their children to nurseries for their upbringing. Remember that no nursery can provide the child with a mother's care and affection. The child does not stand in need of an institution like a poultry farm, but instead, the child needs the mother's care and love to ensure the provision of this care, love and affection, it is imperative that the mother should take charge of the management of the household. If a women is not doing this, she is rebelling against nature. The result of this rebellion against nature is the same which is before our eyes today.

The basis of great achievements is the "Home"
Allah has said in His Book, the Qur'an, fourteen centuries ago:

“Stay in your houses.”

The "Home" alone is your world, your Hereafter and your life. O Women! Do not think that as man is doing great deeds outdoors, you too can do the same by going outdoors. You should think that the "home" is the foundation of all great deeds. If you breed and bring up your children in the right way sow the seeds of Iman (faith) in their hearts and generate Taqwa in them, then this achievement of yours will be much greater than the so-called great deeds done by man by going outdoors, because you have brought up and trained a child on the path of Deen. The anti-propaganda and blind following of the West have begun to eradicate gradually the care of the women in our society for the religious training of their children. In such a situation those women who confined within their homes also sometimes begin to think that the people are right in saying that they have been confined within the four walls of their houses and those women who have gone out of these four walls are perhaps more advanced and progressive than they themselves. At any rate, bear in mind that the services which these 'confined' women are rendering within the bounds of their houses have no substitute and those valuable services cannot be rendered by going outdoors to work in market places and shops.

Contentment and comfort lie in Purdah.
Women should never think that the Purdah is a source of inconvenience to them. To be under Purdah is a part of women's nature. The very meaning of the word 'Aurat’ which is the Arabic equivalent of the word women is something which requires to be kept concealed. This is women's nature and if nature is distorted, then there is no remedy for its reform. The contentment and comfort to be received in living within Purdah cannot be received from a life without Purdah in which women are exposed to public gaze. The protection of the Purdah system is therefore, an essential part of modesty and chastity.

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