I recently received a new mobile phone. It’s a smart phone, and looks very nice, shiny and delicate. The screen looks amazing. One of the first things I did shortly after I got the phone was to go out and buy a cover for it. I didn’t want the phone to get damaged. Unlike my previous phone, this one just seemed like it needed to be protected.
So when I got the cover for it, that’s when it hit me. This analogy I’ll tell you about in a short while. The shops we went to had many covers, for Samsung’s and I-phones, and all the latest phones and it seemed to me that the new “in-thing” was to get a cover for your phone. And that’s when I realized something important.
See these new phones are delicate, beautiful and somewhat fragile. If one scratch gets on it the whole screen may easily damage. The shiny screen needs to be protected. The sleek body of the phone needs to be held within a cover so that no harm comes to it. And because it is so beautiful and we care so much about it, what do we do, we want to protect it! So how do we do that, we cover it with a protective pouch or cover so that it can maintain its beauty…Starting to understand the analogy now?
So that’s how it is with women. We are beautiful, shiny, sleek, and delicate (not to compare women to a phone but you get the point right?) And Allah loves us, way more than we love our latest version mobile phones. Obviously just like we don’t want any harm to come to our phones, not even a scratch, this is what Allah wants for us. The soft padding of the cover is meant to protect the phone, just as our hijab and modest dress is meant to protect us. And what’s more, when our phones are in its cover we also protect it from all those who want to see it but shouldn’t. Like the robbers or thieves, or even those people who may long to have the same phone as we do. So similarly, when we are in covers, we are not seen by those who are not meant to see us. We take our phones out and show it to those who we trust, just like Allah exposes us to those who have been entrusted to care for us.
And what about men, you may ask? It’s okay, you can go ahead and ask this, many people ask that all the time.
Men can perhaps be likened to the older phones, you know, the ones that were not so smart. The screens didn’t shine so brightly and the phone wasn’t so sleek and shiny, so we didn’t care that much and getting a cover would just be bothersome. And even if those phones got scratches and even if we dropped it many times (as most of us probably have), it still worked fine, and the scars and bruises were hardly noticeable. You all know what I’m talking about right, and I don’t mean any bias against men at all when I say this, it’s just that they are rougher and tougher (physically) and I know that a lot of them these days try to make themselves look beautiful, but women are still way more beautiful (MashaAllah) so you can never compare a man to a woman, just like you’ll never compare a Smart phone to an older one.
So there’s the analogy that I got today, and I naturally had to share it with others, and the next time you carefully slip your new I-phone (or Samsung or whatever you have) in its protective pouch, maybe you’ll think of me and remember my words, and who knows, maybe you’ll be kind enough to make a little prayer for me too!
A sister has brought it to my attention that it comes across as if what I'm saying in this post is that protection is the only reason for covering. Please be aware that hijab is a multi-dimensional concept and goes far beyond just covering for protection. There are many reasons for hijab and definitely when Muslim women don the hijab, it is out of obedience to Allah Almighty and not because they do it because they see themselves as a "smart phone"in need of protection. I apologize if this is misleading in any way. May Allah forgive me for my shortcomings!
Image 1 from here
Image 2 from here
Image 3 from here