Sunday, June 14, 2009

New Hope for Gender Equality

INDONESIA: Using Religion to Strengthen Gender Equality
By Fabio Scarpello

DENPASAR, Indonesia, May 12 (IPS) - ‘My husband rapes me repeatedly. I asked the ulama (religious leader) for help, but he sided with him, saying that according to Islam, a woman has to obey her husband. I have nowhere else to go. I have no tears left to shed. I no longer scream.’

It was while recording stories like this that staff at Indonesia’s National Commission on Violence against Women (Komnas Perempuan), a branch of the country’s Human Rights Commission, decided in 2007 that they needed to focus on religious leaders if they wanted to protect women.

That insight led to intense brainstorming, studies and analysis, which with time has morphed into three books written by female scholars and religious leaders representing Islam, Catholicism and Protestantism.

Titled ‘Breaking the Silence: Religions Listen to the Voice of Female Victims of Violence in the Name of Justice’, the books in Bahasa Indonesia were launched in the capital Jakarta, late-April. They aim to break the monopoly held by men over interpretations of holy books and to challenge the hegemonic patriarchal culture upon which domestic violence is based.

It's about time! No matter what I may say or think; religion is here to stay.
I really hope this goes world wide.

People come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. Take no one for granted and embrace all equally with joy!
Julie A. Manhan ...



Thanks for sharing this Walt, it is enlightening but at the same time revolting as well. Many Muslim men do wrongly interpret the teachings of the Holy Qur'an (HQ). IN fact, even in the issue of polygamy, it was stated in the HQ that a Muslim man is allowed to marry more than one if he could give justice to all his wives by treating them all fairly.

I do not wish to expound on this anymore but suffice it to say that every Muslim woman has rights and liberties that must be justly recognized in the name of Islam.

Those who distort the teachings of the HQ to serve their own interest are hiding in the guise of religion but in effect, they are hiding in sin.

Walt said...

As far as I know, the Great Spirit never said He or She, had a religion. It is a good thing too, for Allah has no restrictions in dealing with the hearts and souls of all His children. It took me years to understand this! That religion is not relevant to our creator. Religion is but a product of or feeble understanding. A grand show created by man in order to appease our fears of the Great Mystery. And it is the fate of all religions, to be corrupted and used for darkness as well as light.