Muslim Women Are Sharing Their Sexual Harassment Incidents At Holy Places Like Hajj

Man gave birth to religion to seek sanctuary in when everything else in their lives fails. It is the one institution that imposes customs and guides the way for those who have lost their path. So when you set out on a journey to seek divine intervention, the last thing you expect is to experience assault.

Of the five staunch pillars of Islam, Hajj, i.e. a pilgrimage to the holy land of Mecca is one of the most important ones. After the horrific rape-murder case of little Zainab, women are now sharing their stories of experiencing sexual harassment even in holy places like Hajj.

Mona Eltahawy, a feminist author who focuses on writing and speaking about the issues faced by Arabs and Muslim women is sharing numerous stories of women’s account of experiencing sexual assault in holy places like, but not restricted to, Hajj.

Years ago, in her book “Headscarves and Hymens”, the Egyptian-American writer talks about the reasons why the Middle East needs a sexual revolution. In the same book, she highlights her own experience of sexual assault. Ahe was 15 and terrified to tell her parents.

So many women came forth fearlessly to share their stories. I’m only listing some of them here for you to see and read for yourself.

1. This brave girl who shared her experience in complete detail. Due to the backlash she received for it, she deactivated her account and then decided against it.

2. For the fear of God and sin, have some shame.

3. Sexual harassment is garbed in robes of indifference and accidents.

4. Mosque or temple, what difference does it make? Sexual predators see no religion.

5. How does the age justify a ‘bad touch’?

6. Hard to believe but true, nonetheless.

Mona’s thread sparked a chain of conversations and soon people started sharing more stories using #MosqueMeToo.

1. It doesn’t have to be just you, it can happen to those with you too.

2. Imagine having to stop going for your ritualistic prayers to avoid these experiences.

3. Young girls and old, the experience doesn’t change.

A religious journey is supposed to be a safe escape from the clutches of our society and problems. It is supposed to help you get closer to God and thereby find inner peace.

Women are not safe even on their religious journey. Although this thread highlights the incidents faced by Muslim women at Hajj and other holy places, sexual harassment is not restricted to just that. It is everywhere you see. The only difference is that we’re scared to confront it.

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