A Hijabi’s Unique Recession

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Summer. It’s that time of year when teenagers clamber out of their homes and hunt for that perfect summer job. Especially with the recession taking its toll, many are left looking for work like never before. Interestingly, many teens cite that they work in this odd world of labor not only to have more money in their pockets, but also to instill early life lessons that can really add up to assist them in their later life. It was this that got me thinking: ‘Is it possible that other early life experiences can help to positively shape a person’s mind and future? Is it possible that these experiences can help one to mature mentally at a faster rate than the average person?’

The more I thought about it, the more I found the hijab to be a more permanent observation of this theory.

Like job hunters, the Muslim hijabi has a recession of her own to face: the recession of understanding and tolerance. The hijab is unfortunately viewed as an oppressive prescription forced upon Muslim women, but in reality, it is worn by some of the most talented and intelligent minds that this world has ever produced. Unlike the limited view of what the media puts before us, there is more to this piece of cloth than meets the eye. Not only is it worn to make a statement and preserve the value of its wearer, but it can also serve as a protection and preparation for the harsh world that the Muslimah is bound to enter.

So, here’s a little peek into the resume of the Muslim woman. When a Muslim woman makes the decision to don the hijab, she submits herself physically by wearing it and mentally by comprehending its purpose. Allah (glorified and exalted be He) orders in His divine book:

“And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty…” [Nur 24:31]

This verse demonstrates that Allah (glorified and exalted be He) first orders the believing women to obey His command, providing a summary of guidelines, and then prescribes to them a means of manifesting this command. He (glorified and exalted be He) establishes the mental capacity and understanding needed to take on this lifelong commitment first, and then provides a way to fulfill these orders to the best of their capabilities. Therefore, when a Muslimah begins to wear the hijab, she has hopefully reached an appropriate level of self-acceptance, submission, and understanding – what one may call the job requirements of this Divine command.

It is self- acceptance for being compliant with her appearance as chosen by her Creator who knows her needs, desires, and vulnerabilities better than any other, submission because she recognizes the commands of her Lord and submits to them fully, and understanding because she has a greater purpose and her life is defined and limited by only that which has been prescribed by her Lord. She has few doubts on which path to take and what decisions to make because she has faith in her Lord and this piece of cloth serves as an everyday reminder of her purpose and justification of her struggles through life.

Just as a warm blanket can bring comfort to those lost, cold, and confused, the headscarf brings warmth, guidance, and comfort to the Muslimah, racing her past the dramas of her peers, educating her in matters of religion and life her classmates remain unaware of. She is matured by the security and mercy of her Creator, the support of her fellow Hijabies, and the struggles of her everyday responsibilities. Talk about job benefits!

All of these characteristics must be taken into consideration when one ponders over the veiled woman, this so-called international symbol of oppression. What Allah (glorified and exalted be He) has given to womankind is a specific dress code for unparalleled modesty, a job unlike no other. The benefits of this cloth, when worn and operated correctly, can make for a most successful person who benefits in this world and the next. May Allah (glorified and exalted be He) guide all Muslim women to fully submit and benefit entirely from this exclusive gift. Ameen.

Hannan Ouyoun is currently an online homeschooling high school junior in Chicago, Illinois. She hails from an odd family of eight consisting of five girls and one boy. Outside of MYM, Hannan enjoys an expansive array of sports including karate and basketball. She may live in Illinois, but you’ll have a better chance of running into her anywhere there’s an AlMaghrib class. Hannan and her family spend almost every weekend somewhere out of state immersing themselves in the study of Islam. She writes for MYM as a means of fulfilling the rights of the knowledge she seeks upon her. Encouraged by her incredible parents, she has finally built up the courage to share what knowledge she has accumulated, alhamdulillah. May Allah, the All-Knowing, accept.


  1. Ameen to your du’a sister Hannan and congratulations for writing the first-ever article dealing with hijab on MYM! 
    I must say, you wrote in such an eloquent and organized fashion that i could swear this was an excerpt from a book. so short and to the point, i think this is a must read for every Muslimah out there (and well, non-Muslims too!)  I loved the following sentence:
    “It is self- acceptance for being compliant with her appearance as chosen
    by her Creator who knows her needs, desires, and vulnerabilities better
    than any other, submission because she recognizes the commands of her
    Lord and submits to them fully, and understanding because she has a
    greater purpose and her life is defined and limited by only that which
    has been prescribed by her Lord.”

    It reminded me of an article i read in Al-Jumu’ah magazine called “Smile From a Veil” or something like that. The author was saying something about how women all across the world (this includes a lot of Muslim women as well) make their acceptance of themselves limited to how they are viewed by men rather than their own selves, or Allah. In the above sentence that i reiterated, you have concisely proved that Muslimahs who truly understand the purpose of hijab are affected by no one’s acceptance except that of Allah (SWT).

    • JazakumAllahu Khair for your feedback. Its very helpful especially after the first article. Alhamdulillah, may this be just the beginning because MYM truly wishes the best for its writers and I can already see so much potential for myself and others through this awesome and totally unique online publication. May Allah bless all of the staff and writers, ameen!

  2. Saadiesikandar Reply

    But it is also our (men) duty to develop the environment in which Muslim women won’t have to bear all these consequences. The verse you mentioned is true but I think it would have been more appropriate to mention the previous verse as well because this verse starts with “And”. So we should know what Allah mentions first.

    “And O Prophet, enjoin the Believing men to restrain their gaze
    and guard their private parts.This is a more righteous way for them: Allah has knowledge of what
    they do”So let us (men) commit ourselves to this first.May Allah guide and help us in fulfilling His commandment to the best of our abilities.Ameen. 

  3. MashaAllah this is an amazing piece. This piece of cloth on my head is my identity. It reminds me my purpose in life, whenever i look in the mirror. It reminds others of my intention, when they look at me. It prevents me from harm and puts me under His umbrella wherever i go. It is indeed an exclusive gift of His Hannan jan, one that i failed to recognize for all these years, but alhamdulilahi rabbil alameen, one that I will cherish as long as i live inshaAllah ta’ala.

  4. Mohamed Turane Reply

    JazakaAllah brothers and sisters in Islam. This is inspiring online prints, theres is more than our
    eyes can see in this article. My heart gets sinking while reading this articles, although far away we are with you in sharing thoughts laden with greatness of Allah taala, the only super power on the earth and heavens others are just creations created that never understood why they are on earth and they will never understand behold Allah mercy. Allahu Akbar.

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