Domestic Violence

Calisha Bennett


Channel: Calisha Bennett

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The speakers discuss the prevalence of domestic abuse and the potential for psychological and emotional abuse to occur. They stress the importance of acknowledging the prevalence of domestic abuse and the potential for psychological and emotional abuse to occur. The speakers also emphasize the need to stop harms and seek support for those affected by domestic violence, educate individuals about rights, and avoid harms in cases where the victim is not present.

Transcript ©

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Sisters like arranging furniture

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altavilla Amina shaytani r rajim Bismillahi Rahmani Raheem in Alhamdulillah Hina. Madhu Anna Stein who wanna tell Pharaoh when are all the billahi min surey and fusina woman se adyar Melina Maja de la hufa mo de la la mejor de Lille fella ha de la Chateau La ilaha illAllah who was the hula shriek Allah, wa shadow Ana Mohammed Abu rasuluh.

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Barely Oh praise is due to Allah. We praise Him we seek His help and we seek His forgiveness. We seek refuge with Allah from the evil within ourselves, and the evil consequences of our evil actions. Whoever our last one our dialogue guides and I'm can misguide and whoever is led astray, none can guide I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah he is alone and has no partner and I bear witness that Mohammed's Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam is his save and messenger, rubbish roughly salary wise Siddeley Emery rock data melissani of kuqali, Salaam Alaikum, warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

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So first of all, inshallah just wanted to say da Cola, hi, Ron, for having me here as your guest, and to the wonderful serving Islam team for their lovely hospitality. And we all know hamdulillah that I'm the physical taboo topic, a sister speaking in a mixed audience, on this type of platform. And I want to thank you as the audience and the community here in Hong Kong for facilitating this. It is a new concept, it's a change but in sha Allah, we ask that Allah Subhana Allah guides us to what is best for our Ummah, for the short term and the long time. I mean, also, I need to apologize, I need to apologize, because out of all the speakers, I'm the one who, you know, are the ones on the

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poster. I'm the one speaker who doesn't have a beard. So I'm very sorry.

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The brothers, my husband is glad that I don't have a beard hamdulillah.

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All right. So inshallah I want you to Firstly, imagine this situation, you constantly feel on edge and very tense? When are they going to freak out? When are they going to be upset? It's constantly watching their body language, trying to detect if they're upset with you or not, is always a specific procedure in your house, how things have to be to make sure that no one is upset, or that person doesn't get upset. So that there's no minimizing the damage control of any type of conflict situation. You're constantly in this hyper vigilant state anxious, worried all the time, so that you're mentally and physically exhausted. When things are quiet, your heart actually beats faster,

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because you're worried like it's too quiet.

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When you think when will this ever stop? When will I have to, you know, when How long will I have to continue to live like this. When will the day come when you don't have the sick feeling about going back home, we don't have a sick feeling about that person coming back home, and the dread of that feeling. When will the day come when you can peacefully sleep without worrying about if a fight is going to break out. Or if you need to protect someone in the house from the aftermath of that fight. When you will be able to be around people or certain individuals without flinching and feeling so nervous and anxious, or worried if there's a loud noise.

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I wanted you to imagine that because that is what victims of domestic domestic violence live through every day.

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And I want you to kind of feel and empathize with that sensation or that emotion of imagine living like that all day, every day. A state of constant anxiety, terror, dread,

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and worry. So let me ask you guys as the audience Do you know, someone who lives feeling like this, put your hand up if you know someone who lives like that.

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Yeah, so maybe 25% of the room a quarter of you know, someone like that.

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Who are the common victims that you would say, of such dynamics?

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Would it be women, women are the common victims or the common recipients of that type of dynamic. We know statistically that that is the case. And perhaps it's a big taboo topic to talk about. It's not spoken about enough as it should be. But we all know deep down that more often than not, it is the women and the sisters who are the victims of such situations. So what is domestic abuse? What is domestic violence, it's an incident or a pattern of instant

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of controlling coercive, threatening manipulative, degrading violent behavior, including sexual violence. Where does domestic violence take place? key word domestic in the home, happens in the home, in what is supposed to be the sanctuary for the believer

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who are the common perpetrators of domestic violence or domestic abuse, abuse, usually it's the partner or the spouse. But it can also happen by family member or carer. Sometimes it's parents inflicting on the children, sometimes it's a carrot inflicting it upon the person that they are caring for. So it can happen in different dynamics, it can happen through a distant relative, for example, in sexual abuse, it's from someone who's, you know, often it's from someone close to the family,

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and not you know, a parent or a spouse. So what types of domestic abuse do we have? We have a type called coercive control. And this is a pattern of intimidation, degradation and isolation of the individual and to control them, and how do they control them with the threat of physical or sexual violence. We also have psychological and emotional abuse, playing with the mind and the emotions of the individual. So domestic violence isn't always about the hitting, punching, slapping. There are many forms of domestic violence that we need to also be aware of an interesting article I came across the other day, it was saying in Australia, one in six men say they experienced emotional

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abuse. The brothers are like don't marry Australian woman now. Right.

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But on the line, you know, they have issues there, where they're like, Where's the refuge for men who have the kids and need to get away from a toxic woman. So it does happen the other way around? You know, this isn't about saying, you know, it's the men against the women and the men are bad and the women are the victims. Sometimes it is the other way around. Sometimes it is a parent on the child, sometimes it is an in law on their daughter or son in law.

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Okay, so another type of domestic violence or abuse is physical, you know, this one commonly.

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And, you know, there are research, there is research that's been done, where they asked about what constitutes, you know, do you think it's allowed to do to, I guess, perpetrate physical abuse, you know, on a person or on your partner.

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In the Muslim community, I think the statistics would be quite high, where a lot of spouses say yes, I'm allowed to hit her. And this is why,

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in, in a crime survey in England, they said, the majority said, it's absolutely unacceptable to hit or slap a partner. But then a few percent said, you can, if she's having an affair or cheating on him, then he can hit her. If she's flirting with other people, then he can hit her, or she's constantly nagging then he can hit her. So yes, that is a Western statistic or research, but we should also reflect what would these statistics be in our community, where we think it's okay to perpetrate this type of behavior. sexual abuse is another type of abuse. And it happens in one in four women and one in six men. And I think it's maybe an area to be looked at and covered by the

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brothers. It's actually very common within our Muslim community. And it men can be the victims of sexual abuse, yes, in the Muslim community. So it's very common, and very unspoken about, and particularly with the shame that surrounds it, and particularly the manipulative nature of it, which we're going to look at a little bit, inshallah. And there's also financial and economic abuse,

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particular, but particularly sinister type of abuse that I want to touch on and go into a little bit more. For the reason that a lot of these other types of abuse are kind of stemming from this abuse, which is common in our community. It's called spiritual abuse. Has anyone heard of spiritual abuse before?

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No one's heard of it. Okay, as I read out the descriptions of it, I think by the end, you'll be like, okay, I've seen this happen, oh, I felt this happen or have experienced that happening. Spiritual abuse, what is the definition of spiritual abuse? It's the denial or the use of the religion, the beliefs and practices to control or dominate a person. So using the religion to dominate and control a person.

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The issue with this type of abuse is that it disturbs the victim's relationship with Allah.

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Because what happens is the perpetrator says Allah, this prophet Mohammed, fellow law, Islam that obey me, and sometimes it's in unfair situations, and the victim is taken advantage of and then the victim becomes confused. What's happening to me doesn't feel right. But the perpetrator is saying that Allah and His Rasul say, this is what you have to submit to and this is what you have to obey.

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So the issue of spiritual abuse is that it isolates the person. It exploits the Quran and the Sunnah.

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to accuse the person of things and to berate them and to put them down

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it causes the perpetrator and victim to take advantage of the victims God consciousness and to belittle them. So the person the victim feels almost masala loves Allah subhanaw taala. And then what happens is the perpetrator will manipulate them using that because they know it works very effective, guilt them to control them. You know, it's like a type of like brainwashing.

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And the person will minimize their own behavior, the nature of these, the perpetrators often very charming and deceptive. People in the street or in the community whenever know that that's a person who is spiritually abusive, because they're like, no is a nice guy, or you know, she's a very nice sister.

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And, you know, with spiritual abuse, sometimes it's even the mother, a mother can perpetrate spiritual abuse on her children, if you don't do this, Allah will do that. If you don't obey me, Allah will do this to you, says guilting the person using Allah so that the individual can control that person's choices.

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The perpetrator will use the Quran and the Sunnah to get the victim to forgive them again. And again, when they make you know, when they cause harm. They'll use it to control money, they'll position themselves as an authority in the community or a high level member. And that will protect them because of the status. Because then what happens is when the victim says, I can't handle this anymore, I'm going to go tell someone, the perpetrator will say, no one's gonna believe you. Do you know who I am in the community. So again, a type of manipulation.

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There's often an imbalance of power and authority in the dynamic of this, sometimes the perpetrator will blame that you know, the victim being upset, and not being happy with the situation. They'll say, it's the gym making you like this, you're crazy telling the person they're crazy, you need help you need medication, when the victim is like depressed and can't function or, you know, stands up to that person.

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Spiritual abuse by is often use as well to justify things islamically for the example of physical violence using Ayat of the Quran,

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intimacy, also using different Hadith according to the you know, that individual interpretation, and then placing that type of pressure and expectation on the victim. And as I explained before the mother and the parents rights over their children, so we have to realize that anyone who has a spiritual hold over another person can take advantage of them. Okay, so this can happen in the dynamics, we see it in the news, sometimes sometimes, you know, it's a chef or a very high community member who perpetrates spiritual abuse on their followers or on their assistance, or different types of things. May Allah protect all of us, I mean, and there's a situation called religious cognitive

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disorders. And these are irrational thoughts and beliefs that we unknowingly reinforce over time, where if the woman she's kind of like being told that anytime she has an opinion, that Allah is displeased with you. So she says, I shouldn't have an opinion, because Allah will be displeased with me. So she loses her voice, so she loses her identity, or you are this so I can do that to you. And then eventually they believe it, that it's part of Islam, to be treated that way. And the perpetrator as well as almost like they brainwashed themselves to think that, you know, because of Islam, I can do this, or I can do that and they take it into their own hands.

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One teacher, that I attended her lesson on spiritual abuse, she said, if you are based someone, and it harms you, and it harms your Eman, then Allah will punish you for allowing your Eman to be damaged, for allowing that person to cause that damage to you and your Eman and your identity. So we have to realize that our last one style I never want us to be harmed or oppressed in any dynamic and in any relationship.

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And is only obedience as Muslims in that which is good. We never obey something which is harmful to us, to our family, to our human to all this. There's only obedience in that which is good.

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And if we look into our fitter and fitter is that natural instinct of right and wrong? And sometimes we become disconnected from that. And we have to check in like this doesn't feel right how I'm being spoken to or how I'm being treated. If you're Fitzroy your heart knows that. Then listen to it.

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Yeah. What are the traits of the victim? If someone is being abused domestic violence, spiritual abuse, sexual abuse, what are the traits usually of those individuals who are the victims of it? Often they have like a lack of knowledge.

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Because if you don't know your rights, you can't stand up for your rights. So it's easy for someone to take advantage of that person. Often it's reverts converts to the dean get taken advantage of

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People who are isolated, they don't have their family or community network around them. Often the nature of that person is they're also very soft natured, sincere, they're empathetic, like they're very kind, good people and very easily manipulated, and controlled and dominated by these perpetrators, it might also be someone who has an abusive background. They were abused when they were young. So now when it's happening in this relationship they used to it, that's how my father spoke to me, or that's how my brothers those, you know, that's how my mom treated me not normal. So she doesn't even know or he doesn't even know that it's happening.

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The person might also be very self, self sacrificing, always putting others before themselves, they might have low self worth or self esteem. And they might have, you know, been used to growing up in an environment of power imbalance. So what are some extreme examples or some, you know, upsetting examples that I personally have witnessed? So, you know, I've been given this stage this microphone to be a representative to share what do we see and experience from the sister side of things. I think one of the ones that shocked me the most was there was one sister who was in a very toxic, you know, marriage, there was domestic violence, it was verbal abuse, there was financial abuse, or

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nearly all of those types of abuse.

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And she didn't know she didn't have the courage to get out, or to say, I want a divorce, she just felt absolutely trapped. Even though the options were there, the family support was there, she just didn't know how to get on. She said,

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I knew it was really bad. When the thought came to my mind, if you leave Islam,

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then your marriage will be void. That's the only way to get away from him. So look at that the extent that it got to, and when I heard that I was like Pamela, how your mind gets to that through the experience of you know, almost like emotional, psychological, spiritual torture that she had endured. She couldn't think of a way out, didn't have the courage didn't know how to, you know, find her safety for herself and her children. And the only thing that could come to her mind was if I leave Islam, then I can get away from him. So this man didn't know this is what he was leading his wife to. And he was the man of knowledge Pamela and have status in the community.

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The examples of sexual abuse, how many sisters come to me and say, I need to tell you something. I've never told anyone this before shaking, crying. Because they need to say it because when they say that's part of the healing, it sets them free to say this is what happened to me when I was young. Or this is what happened to me, you know, in my, you know, whatever stage of life and what do I do about it? No, I can't tell anyone I can't tell them all the shame surrounded by that type of abuse so much shame. Let alone brothers. I've you know, I've very rarely heard that brothers have told another brother Brother, you know, I was sexually abused when I was young. Why aren't we

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talking about these things? As we saw the brothers and brother while talking very openly about these these matters? Yes, it's taboo. But it's happening so much everywhere. We have to talk about it and help each other and stop the harm.

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As believers we enjoying the good and forbid the wrong with the forbidden the wrong. We keep telling each other do this do that be good maxilla read Quran and we're not stopping the wrong, we're brushing it under the carpet.

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Another example is just the constant put down sometimes that a child or a young system I experienced from her family. So much so she's got depression, anxiety, self esteem is zero self harming. The parents never know about the self harming because they do it under the clothes, and at parts of the body that the family don't see. And it's from the negative put downs, criticism control, manipulation of parents.

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Physical abuse, seeing sisters with bruises, seeing sisters who've had knives held against their necks, seeing sisters whose husbands have spat on their face.

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Sisters who've had to beg on their knees to their husbands, sisters, you had to be intimate five minutes after being bashed

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these types of situations where it just makes you feel sick to your stomach. This is what goes on behind closed doors. And we don't talk about this shame. Why is this shame to talk about harm that's being done that needs to stop.

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And it takes all of us to stop it. Brothers and sisters coming together to prevent these harms in our community. Another sad thing is when the non Muslim shelters and the non Muslim groups are the ones who are supporting and protecting those who have to flee domestic violence. What embarrassing thing for Alma? When you ask the stuff and they're like, yeah, a high percentage of Muslim Muslim women coming running away from their Muslim homes and community to get help.

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So if I asked you this question, is domestic violence oppression?

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Yes or no?

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Yeah, these stories it's quite clear. This is a type of oppression. What is the Islamic context of this issue?

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Last month Allah says in the Quran, la todo ruhuna Little De La hin do not harm them in order to oppress them. It's a commandment do not harm them in order to oppress them in sort of Atala chapter 65 verse six. When we look at Lulu oppression, it will be darkness for a person on the Day of Judgment. Even Omar reported that the Prophet salallahu alaihe salam said, verily oppression will be darkness on the Day of Resurrection. Do we want darkness or do we want light on the day of judgment?

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And that's recorded in Bukhari and Muslim. The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam also said do not cause harm or return harm. Whoever harms others, Allah will harm him.

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That should make anyone who's causing harm on another, feel sick to their stomach. Whoever harms others Allah will harm him.

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I don't know about you, I don't want the harm of Allah subhanaw taala on me, that's a scary, a scary, reprimand whoever is harsh with others, then Allah will be harsh on him.

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And that is why we believe that Allah, Allah is most just and will serve all justice.

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We have to remember that no one has absolute authority in Islam, no one who has absolute authority. Only Allah subhanaw taala we only worship and obey all the way to the end, Allah subhanaw taala nothing, no one else.

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We have to know everyone has rights. And those rights that you have are your boundaries. This is where you draw the line with someone how someone can or cannot treat you and what you should or shouldn't tolerate as a Muslim.

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So the question based on this talk, domestic violence, what is our role? So what is our role number one is if you witness it, if you see it if it's around you to intervene. We know that the prophets de la la Mollison said Whoever sees an evil should change it with his hand. If he can't, then with his mouth and say something. And if you can't do that, hate it with his heart, and that is the weakest of faith.

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So we have to intervene. Number two, seek help for the victim, stop blaming the victim. If you just listen more, if you behave more, if you make that person happy, just just just all these excuses telling the victim who's already usually doing as much as they can remember, we saw the traits of the victim, very self sacrificing, very soft natured, very obedient is their nature. We have to stop blaming the victim and we have to get help for them, educate them about what a last one is Allah, how he empowers them, and how Islam empowers them. Get them the counseling and the support that they need. An interesting role as well. Number three is to seek help for the perpetrator. We shouldn't

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just help the victims we have to help those who are perpetrating it. Usually they are people who are suffering or in pain themselves. That's why they inflict it on others. You know that saying hurt people hurt people. Yeah, but we have to also remember that oppression breeds oppression. Abuse breeds abuse. If we don't change it, the next generation will carry it on.

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And often controlling behaviors based on an insecure belief. A person is very insecure if they have to inflict harm upon another who is maybe weaker or a little less advantaged than them.

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We have to why do we have to help the perpetrator the Prophet sallallahu alayhi salam said help your brother whether he is an oppressor or he is oppressed? And then it was said or messenger of Allah we help the oppressed but how do we help the oppressor? What do you mean we hope the oppressor the Prophet sallallahu alayhi salam said by seizing his hand, stop the harm.

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Stop the harm. Number four, speak out and raise awareness. Talk about it at your community gatherings. The brothers should talk about it in the massage aid in the hope buzz in the general conversations at the coffee shop. What do you guys think about domestic violence? What do you think about spiritual abuse? Do you think sexual abuse is happening? Talk about it. Number five, be brave. Whether you're the victim or the bystander, be brave. There's a saying I tried to see who said it, but there's so many different opinions. I'm not gonna say who said it. But this saying I really love this one. Courage is not the absence of fear. It's the ability to act despite it, even though it's

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scary to stand up to a perpetrator or to get involved when it's like no, it's not our problem. We don't get involved, be brave and take action and do the right thing as we are commanded by Allah subhanaw taala.

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And to finish up inshallah, you're probably wondering what this strange thing is on the table. Yeah.

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So open up,

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and I'll tell you what it is. I'll show you what it is. Because I want it to stay with you.

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Glass from my hotel, I promise we'll take it back.

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And that's been Malik reported at the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam.

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came to some of his wives when they were being driven by the camel driver and Joshua and the Prophet salallahu alaihe. Salam said, are driver. Be gentle when you carry the glass vessels.

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So what are women? glass vessels? How would I treat this if the Prophet salallahu isn't just didn't want the caravan to shake too much that he didn't want that harm to come to his women?

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And like, likewise for all of the women of our own, but what do we do we do more than just shake the trailer, the caravan. Women get thrown stepped on, as I mentioned, spat on, abused, whether it's daughters or wives. And I'm mentioning females because I'm here to represent that. And we know that the majority of victims are women. So we have to follow what the prophet salaallah what are some of the example that lead we want to talk about following the sooner the sooner is to be careful and treat the women like glass vessels fragile, delicate, precious, not like a piece of rubbish to be crunched and thrown and treated and disregarded and treated as worthless? We want to follow the

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Quran and Sunnah. That's where we start with the example of the Prophet Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. So let's do the right thing. Let's end oppression in all of its forms. Yes, oppression is in the world around us. But let's start in our own homes in our own communities first, may Allah subhanaw taala help us? I mean, and let's remember with greater authority comes greater accountability. Yes, we may have rights over others, but we also have responsibility duckula hirens Chronicle locomobi Hamdi his Chronicle lovin will be handy gala Chateau La ilaha illa Anta nasukawa to be like salaam aleikum wa rahmatullah wa barakato.

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Sister Felicia may invite you to stay on the stage because there will be a panel discussion. So just like hello, hi, Ron. I think she made the atmosphere quite tense. And that was the intention