From A Different Perspective (continued)

This is a follow up to some questions asked to Ain, a young Muslim Malaysian student who wears a veil.

N: What is the significance of the veil in terms of faith?

A: I actually really liked that you asked this. I used to ask it myself and there are various reasons. The first is mainly because Allah swt has asked us. There's more to it. I think one of the reasons is for the protection of women. There is recognition in our religion that humans are not made perfect and this was more true hundreds of years ago.
So, to cover one's hair is not only an illustration of our faith but I personally believe (and have read somewhere) that it was for our own protection. It's like a prevention method I think.
Then there's the other belief that a woman's hair is her crowning jewel, so we cover ourselves and show it to our husband/families only.
N: What is it protecting you from?
A: Men I guess. Like i said, back then it wasnt exactly safe to walk as we please. Of course nowadays it is safe, but it's still law/better to do so for one's own belief. And by back then, I mean hundreds of years ago. It wasnt just the hair but also the showing of ones skin.
N: Would you say that the protective element of Allah is what reinforces your belief in wearing the veil?
A: Yes initially. it really did give strengthen my decision to wear it. I'll be truthful, and this might not apply to everyone else. I used to wonder why I had to wear it if my belief was strong. But understanding the reason helped reinforce the decision. To understand that there is a message. And like i mentioned before, now that I do wear it, the reasoning isnt necessary aymore I guess.
N: Do you believe that there are some women who are forced to wear the veil?
A: Yes I do. I think its sad because I believe, and I've told my own father, that the choice should stem from one's self. Then it would be more meaningful that way.
N: Do you think there are any ways of making it more about the person's own decision to wear the veil?
A: Education. Changing society's views and perceptions, changing the norms, and maybe be less repressive? In Malaysia, the choice is one's own more than the Middle East. And really, I think what is the root of these views is pretty much the regime, leaders, and internal policies that shape what people believe. I also think what some people/families try to do is scare others as opposed to inspire the feeling of wanting.

Thanks again Ain!

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