The hijab is one of those topics that, if not properly handled, can do more harm than good. It is strange to think how a piece of cloth could become the source of much trouble – and it is, because it is so much more than just a piece of cloth. It represents a carrying out of one of God’s orders, and with anything that is done in the name of Allah – there will be tribulations.
However, there are women who have gone through this special struggle and come out of it stronger and have found the will to share their inspiring stories with the world – and within them were the speakers for Hijab Hijrah 2013. Possibly the first of its’ kind, Hijab Hijrah was dedicated to helping ladies understand the world of the hijab by co-sharing life experiences, voicing questions and imparting grooming advice.
The six speakers – Rosita Hussin, Dlla Jazzy, Nur A. Razak, Aida Saini and Rozi Faith had one thing in common – they are all hijabis. But the different ways it took for that to happen is vast, and the journey each of them had with it were fraught with their own set of trials. But now, as successful women in their own fields, they have come together to fill Hijab Hijrah with positivity and inspiration.
And inspire they did. With a 300-strong crowd of ladies eagerly waiting and thirsting for information, they did not disappoint.
All of those who attended have different reasons for being there. Some are seeking clarification from doubts they may have had, some are bursting to share their joyous stories of being a hijabi, while others seek advice for the problems they face when donning the hijab. And what with the strong positive feedback Hijab Hijrah had gotten, it can be said that the event had achieved its’ main aim of wanting to instill confidence in women and be able to show the pride due for choosing to be a hijabi.
The seminar was one-of-a-kind in the sense that it was conceptualized to feel more like an intimate sharing session amongst girlfriends than the usual teacher-student setting. For such a topic, it was vital that the ladies feel comfortable and relaxed – and not feel judged or scrutinized. Of course, for such a cozy setting to occur, no men were allowed. (Sorry guys!)
This is also the first many has heard of that has an entire seminar dedicated to all aspects of the hijab – its’ challenges, its’ miracles, and its’ fashions. I feel it a good thing – the hijab is not something that should be glossed over in a minute of recitation or have one’s opinion forced down the throats of others – time should be taken to address the matter with proper tender loving care.
Because the hijab has so long been kept under wraps (haha) away from the prying minds of many. Before this the world was only divided between those who covered themselves and those who didn’t. If you wore the shawl you wore it, no questions asked. But what we never see is that beneath that piece of cloth is a maze of decisions and experiences and uncertainties that have led them to their choice. Before Hijab Hijrah, these questions were hardly ever heard or answered.
And what makes this topic such a thorny one to navigate sometimes is due to the fact that every single person has had a different background and experience in regards to the matter – so when it comes to addressing the hijab, it is never a ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution (pardon the pun).
So can you imagine the grief it must cause to the ladies who have had no outlet to pour their feelings into? Many must have suffered alone, facing their own personal struggle with the hijab with hardly anyone to turn to. To hear of their challenges during the seminar made many others feel that they were not alone, and as a testament to the empathy and the love of the sisters, not a dry eye could be seen during such courageous sharings.
Hijab Hijrah on its’ own, was also a journey filled with its’ own tests, but one that was started with nothing but good intentions and goodwill. May Allah bless those who have contributed to this in anyway, and I’m sure there are many sisters who are looking forward for more of such seminars.
And who can sum up the event better than one of the speakers themselves? In Rozi Faith’s words:
“Sisters, always remember that Hijab Hijrah is not mine. It is yours. It’s ours. Let’s continue to have each other in our du’a.”
Pictured above is the “Hijab Hijrah” book, filled with personal stories of women in their struggle to find God through the hijab.
Price retails at only $19.90.