by Khadijah Ali (News & Analysis, Crescent International Vol. 52, No. 12, Rajab, 1444)
At a time when a shrill campaign is underway to impose western-based gender identity politics on the rest of the world, it is important to reflect on Islam’s position on the issue. Not only is family life under attack but new, un-natural definitions are being peddled and imposed, all in the name of ‘freedom of choice’.
Like other scriptures, the Qur’an has a very clear position on marriage and sexual relations. Islam defines marriage as being a union between a man and a woman. Marriage is a public declaration and is witnessed by other people, usually relatives and friends. Islam stipulates that sexual relations are permitted between a male and a female only after marriage (emphasis added). The purpose is clear: to prevent promiscuity and establish the identity of the biological father to ensure he takes responsibility for children born out of this union.
The Qur’an states: “O people! We have created you from a male and a female and rendered you into [ethnic] derivatives [of each other] and corresponding communities [to each other] for the purpose that you might come to mutually understand each other…” (The Ascendant Qur’an, Surah al-Hujarat : 13).
In another ayah (verse), the Qur’an states: “O people! Avoid your Sustainer [as it pertains to His corrective power], who has created you out of one living organism/spirit, and out of it created its mate, and out the two spread abroad a multitude of men and women…” (Surah al-Nisa :01).
There are many other ayats in the noble Qur’an that emphasis this aspect. Islam’s injunctions, ordained by Allah from on high, have worked perfectly well for Muslims, as they should. They lead normal happy lives even when their economic condition may not be very good.
Islam views the family as a bedrock of society. In fact, it extends the loving care beyond what is referred to as the “immediate family”, i.e., husband and wife. Throughout the Qur’an, there are beautiful ayats that enjoin people to show love and mercy to their elderly parents. In two of the most moving ayats, the Qur’an states:
“And your Sustainer has decreed that you conform to no one except Him [and that] you be kind and helpful to [your] parents. Should they reach old age while you are alive—one or both of them—do not say a word that will irritate [and disrespect] them and do not raise your voice [in their presence], but speak to them in an honorable manner,
“And be courteous in a humble way toward them, saying, ‘O my Sustainer! Have mercy on them as they nurtured me during my babyhood and childhood’,” (Surah al-Isra : 23-24).
The Qur’anic construct is very revealing. Immediately after commanding us to conform to our Sustainer [Allah], the ayah mentions kindness toward parents, especially if they reach old age. It is common human experience that as people reach old age, they become physically infirm and become forgetful as a consequence of the onset of al-zheimer. This is the stage in the parents’ life when they need help. Who better suited to provide such help than their own children who were brought up with such loving care by their parents when they were young?
Such love and affection toward parents have long been abandoned in the material driven western world. The only utility of elderly parents for children today seems to be what they will leave in inheritance for them. Beyond that, elderly parents are dumped in what is referred to as “Old age Homes” or “Long-term care.” There is no care. During the pandemic, it became clear what horrific mistreatment elderly people are subjected to in such facilities.
These developments must be viewed in the context of the overall breakdown of family values. When marriage is no longer defined as a union between a man and a woman, there can be little affection left in children toward their parents. Often, this responsibility falls on the shoulders of mothers since the man simply walks out of a relationship with few or no consequences. The notion of single motherhood has become a fad worn as a badge of honour!
It is, however, the new curriculum taught to children at school that is of serious concern to most parents. Children as young as five are being indoctrinated at school to accept as normal two men acting as husband and wife or two women as husband and wife. Homosexual behaviour is not only being normalised but imposed on young children.
This new gender-based craze has emerged in the last 30 years or so. Why is there so much emphasis on sexuality in the west and why such belligerence in imposing this lifestyle on the rest of the world? If there is freedom of choice, as the west claims, then people should be free to choose their lifestyle and not be coerced into accepting something that they do not believe in.
The west’s cultural colonialism—and that is what it is—was on full display at the FIFA World Cup in Doha, Qatar (November 20 – December 18, 2022). Amid the myriad problems facing the world, from mass poverty and inequality to climate crisis and disease, the one issue that was constantly peddled by the west was gay-lesbian rights. There was absolutely no regard for the values of the host country or the millions of other people that were there from all over the world.
The latest sexual craze has emerged in societies that have abandoned scriptural teachings. All scriptures define marriage as being a union between a male and a female for the purpose of procreation so that the human race can continue. Unfortunately, even churches have been bullied into accepting this sexual anarchy.
It is interesting to note that less than 5% of people fall into the category of the sexual alphabet soup: LGBTQ. Yet, it is being imposed on the rest of the world as if they constitute a majority. An online petition launched in Britain demanding an end to ‘Relationship and Sex Education (RSE)’ lessons in primary schools garnered more than 100,000 signatures in two days. The RSE focuses on promoting LGBTQ lifestyle among children.
With more than 100,000 signatures (it has crossed 138,000), the matter must be taken up and debated in parliament. The British government has refused to even acknowledge it by the time this article was uploaded. Are governments that claim to be democracies not obliged to respond to people’s concerns?
In the past, the institution of marriage was seen as a necessity for establishing a family and ensuring the financial security of both the husband and the wife. Today, this is no longer the case. Since the US leads the western world in fashion and social norms, changes in marital status have been quite pronounced in America. This is also the case in Europe.
According to an analysis of new census data by the Population Reference Bureau, there has been a significant decline in marriage rates in the US. For instance, never-married single people ages 25 to 34 in the US outnumber married couples by 46 to 45 percent. A decade ago, married couples held a 20-point edge in the age group. Various reasons have been advanced for this rapid shift in lifestyle: changes in social attitudes, increased access to education and opportunities for women, and economic factors.
What is often overlooked is that such a lifestyle is deliberately promoted by what is referred to as “popular culture”. And the promoters of this “popular” or imposed culture are mostly men. It suits them to not make any firm commitment in any relationship that results in imposing an undue burden on women.
Psychologists have also contributed to the notion of women being “happier” outside marriage. Such studies as “Is Marriage Worth It for Women? The benefits go mostly to men,” have reinforced the notion among women that they are ‘better off’ without marrying.
Other studies that show the benefits of marriage are deliberately ignored (see here and here). The consequences of such manipulation of social attitudes are reflected in very high suicide rates both in Europe and the US and the extremely high incarceration rates in the latter.
Studies show that children from single-parent families are more prone to committing crime than two-parent (husband and wife) families in the US. 70% of juveniles in state-operated institutions and 85% of youth in prisons come from fatherless homes. 80% of rapists also come from fatherless homes.
Despite these horrendous statistics, there is a drive to promote a lifestyle without marriage and present it as normal. One wonders whose agenda is being promoted?