Spiritual Abuse In The Community

Umm Jamaal ud-Din


Channel: Umm Jamaal ud-Din

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Bismillah Alhamdulillah wa Salatu was Salam ala rasulillah. While he was off he he woman Well, first of all my dear sisters as salaam Alaykum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

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inshallah vidyalay Tada, today, I've got a different type of topic to speak to about.

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Some of you may be aware, I was asked to give a talk a couple of weeks ago at life matters regarding spiritual abuse in the community. So I thought it would be beneficial to bring that topic here. Because I know all of you want to come, but you couldn't make it. Um, so what I'm going to do today is basically just reflect back to you my own experiences with spiritual abuse in the Muslim community. Um, you know, as you know, I'm not, I'm not a counselor, or a psychologist, but what I, what I do is I basically made myself available for sisters,

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online, and through WhatsApp, you know, if you've got questions, you know, give me some advice.

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because I realized that over the years that a lot of sisters don't have access to knowledge, and that, you know, knowledge, not having knowledge means that you can easily be manipulated into situations, or bullied into, you know, accepting completely unacceptable situations. And what a lot of sisters want to know is, you know, is this acceptable, exactly what I'm going through? And, and sometimes I want to know, do I actually have grounds for Cola, things like that, you know, do they do need to get speak to somebody about that to work out? Are they overreacting? Or is this really, that I am being oppressed with what's happening with me, so it's important to be able to be there

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for them, because not everybody has access to, you know, like, for example, they can't necessarily approach male mushiya. fifth one, for what, for one reason or another, especially when we're talking about sisters who live in more remote areas of Australia or even overseas, they don't have the same type of access available to them. Um, so before I begin, I want to mention by saying that, whatever I'm going to share with you, it's from my own personal experience of working with sisters, I'm not, it's not based on clinical research or anything like that.

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And if any of you, you know, feel triggered by anything I say, due to situations you've gone through, so what I advise you to do is, you know, seek help, you know, through a counselor through a psychologist, you know, someone who's qualified inshallah, to to help you with that it is important to work through your feelings, you know, what's happened to in the past, but I'm going to just introduce the topic. So first of all, you know, what is spiritual abuse, basically,

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unfortunately, what it is, is when somebody, you know, instead of the religion being a means to help bring somebody closer to a loss of pantalla, what they do is they use the religion to basically control, abuse, manipulate, or take advantage of people, due to that person believing they're in charge to do so.

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Right, that's not sure what it basically is. And so what often you find is that they'll, they'll use only certain verses, and take those out of context, and then ignore other verses. So there's like an imbalance because they are imbalanced themselves. They basically make the dean in balance, because only pick and choose the verses that suit them. It's called cherry picking, basically, you cherry pick, you know, the verses or the heads that suit your agenda, and you you leave off the other ones that give the balance in the day.

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Okay, so we have to realize that all the verses you read all of the crime, all the, the Hadees that you read,

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they were in order for, you know, who they're addressed to was for that person to reflect upon them, for them to to gauge their own, you know, implementation of their rights and responsibilities towards others. It was never there for others to use as a weapon, you know, to basically manipulate somebody into doing things. All right. So

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why is spiritual abuse so damaging? Okay, why is spiritual abuse so damaging? Of course, all abuse is damaging right, no doubt that any type of abuse is damaging and destructive, and it has the potential to break and destroy a person, amen. But what's so particularly destructive about spiritual abuse, is that it often blackens and distorts a person's look at their faith. Because instead of the

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Being a means to bring someone closer to a lot like, you know, something that enlightens you and you do that beautiful feeling of getting close to a loss of pantalla. Instead, the dean is being used as a weapon to control manipulate and taking advantage of someone.

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So So what happens instead of looking at the beautiful teachings of Islam through an or like a, through a lens of or and beauty, a person can often become filled with feelings of, you know, guilt, and shame, or spiritual unworthiness. Like they're not good enough before Allah, you know, each time they hear an AR or Hudis that further

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that sort of further, you know, seals that for them that those feelings like they face every time I hear in AR and how do they feel further guilt and further unworthiness. Every time they hear that, because of the way that the deeds being used against them. So before I go into looking at some of the specific cases that I come across, in the community, there's two things that I think are very important to highlight before we continue.

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And the first one is that whenever you have any type of imbalance of power or authority, you can have a situation of someone using the upper hand or authority to abuse someone else. Okay, so that's what we have to understand. First of all, whenever you have any type of imbalance of power or authority,

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the person who has the upper hand can use that to abuse somebody else. So that's why do sisters, we shouldn't think that only men or husbands are perpetrators of spiritual abuse.

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Okay, because abusers people who have abusive personalities, right, they will use any means they can in order to manipulate or control someone.

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And one of the ways that they will resort to is by misusing the deen and turning the texts of the Quran and Sunnah into a personal weapon. That's what it basically comes down to, it's just, it's just not another one of their tactics. Like, they'll use different types of ways. When you want an abusive person, like when there's an abusive person, they'll use a number of means to abuse someone, like they might use physical means they might use financial means they might use emotional means. But because the dean is there, you know, and they happen to know some verses or some, you know, Hadees, they'll also use that truth, it's just part of their it's a part of your abuse campaign, you

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could call it.

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So that's the first thing, it's not just about, it's not gender specific. We should even though Yes, the majority of cases we hear do tend to be involving men. But it's not to say that only men can do this. No. And the other thing is true, is that spiritual abuse is not a Muslim specific problem, either. Okay, so anyone who works with interfaith domestic violence would know that, um, although the obviously the, you know, the specific scriptures that are used, are, of course, different, because we have different, we have different religious texts than say, Christians or Jews or Hindus, or, or Buddhists are whatever they are. But the concepts that people lose misuse are very similar.

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Because in all religions in general, you know, you'll find that for example, there's, there's honor towards the parents or there's honor towards the husband, things like that, you know, so, so that. So basically, what it is, is if you take away the faith tradition, you'll find everybody is basically saying the same thing when it comes to the abuse. That's important to understand. Sure, it's not just you'll find that only in Islam, you'll find it happens amongst Christians as amongst Jews, it happens amongst any type of faith group.

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Now, I want to get on now short to long talk about specific cases of spiritual abuse in the community.

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Now, in my experience,

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I'm the main cases I do come across involve domestic violence and abusive husbands. Right, so the vast majority of cases

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that I find, you know, with up sisters mentioning to me that they're going through some type of domestic violence

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situation, you find that in the vast majority, if not all of these cases, spiritual abuse is all it is, is almost always there, if not always there. Okay. It's part of the parcel, basically.

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So this so what you'll find is that besides the other abuses in the relationship of physical abuse, emotional abuse,

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financial abuse, you'll find that they also do

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Using the thing to, you know, suppress their wife.

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And, um,

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and so you get these type of things, you know, sayings come up in the relationship like, you know, you have to obey me, you have to please me, you know, and in the meantime, he's not giving her rights, he's not giving to her her rights, you know, he might not be even spending on her, like, I used some very extreme cases, you know, where he physically abuses her, he's constantly putting her down all the time, you know, makes her feel completely like nothing. He doesn't spend on her, you know, he takes even might be making her work and taking her money off her things like that. And then in the end, he's telling her, you know, you have to, you have to obey me, because I'm your husband,

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you know, you have to please me. And then, you know, if she's thinking about, for example, she can't take it anymore, and she wants to get out of relationship. He's even if you asked me for divorce, you won't go to Jana. You know, things like that. So that's all coming under spiritual abuse, when you're trying to manipulate somebody, and using guilt to control them through their religion.

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So, when this happens most, when this happens most is unfortunately, where you get the husband who believes that he is self entitled, and he wants to take all his rights, but he forgets his own responsibilities and accountability to a loss of pantalla. Right? So if you don't put the verse you know, like, we know that a lot of the, you know, the men that will use that verse, every journal aware, Mona Island, Nisa, you know, that men have been, you know, they are the maintainers and protectors of women. But they forget to read the end of the verse, If you read to the end of the verse, a lot of dynasties in Allaha, can IE en Kabira, that Verily, Allah is the most high and the

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most great above all of you. So it's not an ultimate obedience that the husband has, like, due to him, you know, it's not an ultimate authority that he has over his wife, where he can just do whatever he wants and say whatever he wants with freedom, and not realize that he's accountable to a loss of pantalla. And that he can't be held to account for if he abuses her, or treats her in a bad way or you know, so even, in fact, you know, even even Cassia, Rama, LA, he, he mentioned in his tafsir, that this in this Aya, Allahu taala is, in fact, warning men This is in fact, it comes with a warning in it that if he unjustly oppresses women, then a law he needs to realize that a lot is

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the Willie of that woman a lot is that when they ally is the protector of that woman, and that he will take vengeance against whosoever oppresses her aunt abuses her in her rights. So that's, that's an imbalance. Unfortunately, that has happened in a lot of people's homes.

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And so this is why, you know, we have to realize where the balance lies.

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Now, another more subtle type of abuse that I come across is the over controlling husband,

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who they make the dean over restrictive on their wife. So they, they're completely controlling their wife's movements and everything, you know, practically everything she does, but then you find that making the deen so easy on themselves. So for example, you find there are some who, you know, that wouldn't let her even go out of the house alone. She can't have Facebook, she's not allowed to, you know, she's not have any type of social media. He's over restrictive on Herky jerky, you know,

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he's over suspicious. Now, I'm not talking about Of course, you know, men have rights in advising their wives and be leaders and things like that. So we've got to get the balance there too. But we're talking about it's like, it's not normal type of, if not all type of, you know, overlooking one's wife, you know, I'm trying to say it's going to the extremes. And so for example, when I one case I had not long ago, was you know, a case where a sister told me that her husband, he wants to know, from the time she left the house until the time she comes home, who she'd spoken to what she had said, you know, he wants to see everything on her phone. Like it's it's not normal type of

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you know, it's not a normal type of relationship. And what we do find a lot of these cases where the men are over restrictive, like with their women, unfortunately, I'll be honest, a lot. In a lot of cases. It turns out that these men end up becoming porn addicts, like they're actually porn addicts, or they're cheaters like they are themselves too.

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Free to win and having relationships with women behind her back. But yet with her, they're so strict and these type of things really can cause women, a lot of women, it really shapes them in their Deen, because what happens is they say, I was doing everything islamically I was trying to please Him, you know, in every way, I was trying to be, you know, ally in, in all the aspects of my Deen in my hijab and everything. And yet, he was, you know, having all these relationships with women, he wasn't honest, he was, maybe even men protect our sleeping around that sound. Sometimes it's happened, you know. And so sometimes, unfortunately, the woman because she realizes that and she

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sees the hypocrisy that was there that can cause her to have an adverse reaction where when she does get that divorce, some of them are protectors have like gone and taken off 50 drugs as a reaction, things like that. Now that of course, he's not, um, how can I say that is not an excuse to go do that, because he will be called to account for what he's done. And you'll be called to account for what you've done. But I'm just showing you I, I do understand the feeling of betrayal that someone must feel and you know, the hypocrisy, you know, the hypocrisy, because, especially if that person had some sort of standing in the Islamic community where, you know, everybody, the brothers, for

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example, see him to be a pious person in the community. And yet, this is the way he was dealing with his wife, you know what I mean? So this is, and she knows the true side of him. And so obviously, that can have a big toll on her Amen.

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Now, that, that leads me to say that what adds another layer to this type of abuse is when the husband does has some type of religious authority or standing in the community, because if the man is known to be, you know, a well known leader, or you know, community figure, you know, she's, it's gonna make it very hard for her to be able to get help, because she feels like nobody's gonna believe her. This is, this is a common, a common thing that a lot of women go through, they feel like, no one's gonna believe him, because he's well known. And he's a community figure, everyone thinks he's great, how's anyone gonna believe me that he's got this other side.

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And the other thing is that the husband will often convince her that even if she was going to go get cold, no one's gonna believe her anyway. So who might believe that

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and what adds another layer to that as well is when the leaders or the machines don't show proper support for victims, and take the appropriate action for injustice, that is another thing that makes it even, you know, that will shape a woman in her mind very much. And we know that, like, we'll all say to you that I do believe the situation is slowly improving. I do believe that as hungry la these days, there are many shades, we're taking this a lot more seriously now, and being a lot more careful with these cases. And before in the past, I think it was way worse. But we do know that there have been situations where, you know, there have been particular machines that have been known

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to send sisters back into abusive, and even violent marriages. And, you know, told just be patient, see, stop, you know, that that old saying, you know, instead of protecting them and getting the help for them that they needed, and that was very dangerous. And some, you know, because it's dangerous, because it's putting her physical risk, because we know that many abusive marriages can actually end up in

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like, they can be some very

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extreme cases of domestic violence where the men do actually completely take her life. As you know, there have been situations and some of those have been Muslim women who, you know, their partners, their husbands, unfortunately, went to that extreme. But besides that, even if it's not just the physical threat that she's been placed into, or physical risks she's been placed into, there's even a mental risk because a lot of women emotionally break down due to been constantly in that relationship.

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So all of that just adds another layer to the abuse and can make it even more traumatizing, and can really interfere with that sister's relationship with the loss of pantalla. And often, it can lead them to having a major spiritual crisis. And they can even start pushing Islam when they feel like no one's there for them, excuse me.

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And I do know the difference between those sisters, who when they were in the abusive marriage and went to a bit, you know, a chef who stood by them and gave them the help they needed in their time of, you know, vulnerability, how much that meant to that sister, knowing that she had sold

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To turn to someone to stick up for her when she was in her most vulnerable state. But on the other hand, I've also known situations where the woman felt completely left out, let down by those who she turned to her die, it's kind of neat. And she was turned away from and told just be patient is to go back and be with whatever you're going through. And that really shocker, and some of them have almost lost their Deen due to that. So it's something you have to take really seriously. And that leads me to my second, the second type of abuse, spiritual abuse that we find within the community. And so this spiritual abuse, this is not in order anymore. Okay, so the first one was the major or

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the main type of spiritual abuse that I find from the work I do. But now From now on, this is not in order, okay, because some of these will be more than others. But this one is concerning that which relates to religious or community leaders. Now, so far, in Australia, we haven't been aware of any very public cases of spiritual abuse from a memes or religious leaders, like we've heard about in places like UK and US, like I'm talking about serious cases. But there have been some more subtle cases, which involve overstepping of boundaries, this is definitely has happened.

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And some examples. Some examples of this is, for example, you might have a woman seeking counseling from a religious or community leader, while she's going through some type of vulnerable situation, she might be a new revert might be going through marital problems with the husband, or going through divorce, or any other type of life crisis. And then he proceeds to develop a relationship with her even though she might be still married to a husband sometimes. Okay, that has that has happened.

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So like I said, we haven't been 100. So far, or we're had any major situations where, but I'm sure that there have been, even though they haven't come to public eye, but there have been cases where, you know, and that's not to say sometimes women, okay, since it's a bit of a complex situation, because we know that some women also prey on men as well. Okay, it's known that some women do pray, especially if you know, the man is community figure that will some there will be women who do prey on men as well. But in saying that men also unknown have been known to prey on women. And because they have the authority, they have that authority figure, they need to know their boundaries, and

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they need to feel a loss of pantalla. Because

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you know, men, because if a woman is in a vulnerable situation, she might be more prone to getting into something like that. Now, another example, which definitely does happen in our community, is where you have, for example, like a blonde teacher, who hits and abuses children.

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And unfortunately, when you have this, you find that nobody wants to do anything about it, because he's the chef.

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Right? And, sadly, and our thing is that a lot of kids are not telling their parents, because they take it as normal. And it's actually a serious thing. Because you think about sisters, if you look, first of all, how do you think that that's how it's going to grow up thinking about the Quran.

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Like you're making that child, a lot of children will grow up with bad feelings or bad emotions towards the Quran, because when they were brought up, they were been constantly hit for valdo, trying to memorize and be the children things like that. So and the other thing is, too, that like, it also makes them feel that people of religion are basically like hypocrites, domain, because that's supposed to be someone who's looked up to and yet look how they're being treated by that person.

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And so that it is very concerning. And plus, if you're, if you're trying to hope to get rid of domestic violence out of our community, what lesson are you teaching, for example, even your boys, if you're showing them that as long as you have an upper hand, as long as you're physically stronger, as long as you're, you know, you've a religious authority, that it's okay for you to abuse those who are younger and those who are, you know, more vulnerable? What, what kind of message Are you giving the boys to think that's acceptable? You know, I mean, you're not helping them to learn that that's not acceptable. I, you

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know, we shouldn't think that we shouldn't think that I'm spiritual like us before. We shouldn't think that spiritual abuse can only be done by males. Generally

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women tend not to have,

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you know, we women tend to not have such an authority in general in our community to be able to abuse it. But that's not to say they can't like, it's not to say that it can't happen. Now, there was some cases in the past, because, you know, I've been in the community for about 30 years, I've seen a lot of different things happen. But there was cases in the past where we saw some, you know, we saw spiritual abuse taking place from sisters. Now, these sisters, they had, like, a certain spiritual hold over other sisters. So for example, there was seen as you know, because of who they been with, because of places they've been, you know, it was seen as more pious, they could drop, you

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know, certain Arabic words, so that, you know, they're hooked up to the knowledge and things like that. And they had like an emotional hold of the sisters who followed them. And so they would use spiritual abuse, to basically incite sisters, to, you know, boycott, other sisters, like socially boycott other sisters, to bully other sisters. And I'm not joking or exaggerating when I say that some sisters were actually bashed by other sisters, and this is unhappy again, amongst Muslims. Why, because they convinced those other sisters that for example, this sister is a spy, for example, or she's a calf get on, and she's not Muslim. And so you have to do this for me, because we are

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sisters, you know, we stick together, and you know, you have to have loyalty towards your sisters, you know, you kind of accept that this system will do this, you know, just so it's using that using the religion, to get people to do things for you.

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And so and with and, you know, with women in particular, the way that they can use their abuse is not necessarily always physical, but it's through slander, it's through backbiting and rumors, that's how they can control, you know, they can use it, you know, as we know, those people who've got abusive personalities, who use things like you know, backbiting and slander, to control to control and, you know, sort of,

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basically push them people against others that, you know, against the victims basically. And so we should, this wasn't before, we shouldn't think that only men who do this and like, if you just had to look at nuns look at nuns, and how many nuns were, you know, using spiritual abuse, in over the years, for, you know, for the up for the children are bringing up in their churches and stuff like that. So what I'm trying to say here is, if you get situations of women with authority, you can have that happen, it's very possible As another example, is like, we've got people who do look young,

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for others, and this could be male or female, because what happens with Rukia is that people build up a type of spiritual dependence on the person, like, you start to feel like, only she reads on me, I feel better only if he reads on me, I feel better and, and so sometimes the person can use that spiritual dependence, to get things out of that person. It could be even money, you know, and that, and really trying to get money out of people by using the religion is a type of spiritual abuse. Like if you're putting yourself out there that only you can solve people's problems through the religion and, and through, you're really starting ground on them and stuff like that, then do you

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understand how that can put you in a situation where you can easily start abusing people, because then people who are vulnerable, who are in need, who are emotionally not stable, you know, what I'm trying to say? They can come and give you their money, because they think that you're the answer that they're looking forward. So you use you use the dean to take their monies, that that that nothing, you know, anyone who's in a situation, you know, is, you know, anybody who's in a type of position or authority over others, you know, they really have to fear a loss of pantalla. Because you're not, it's not allowed for you start overstepping your boundaries, and start taking advantage

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of people.

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And that's one thing we have seen has happened in Australia, where you've got spiritual leaders who have, you know, be taking money from people saying, you know, I'm raising for this, I'm raising for that, come on, you know, maybe using Dean's make them give sadaqa but then they've gone and they've taken those funds and not being honest with those funds that that definitely happened. And of course, I'm not saying that we should ever give up giving soda, but we have to realize that unfortunately, they there will be people who are not honest, you know, may not protect us and sometimes those people slowly find their way to the top in the community and people start trusting

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In talking about that as well, like, if you think about it as well, many of the rulers in the Muslim world use ritual abuse to control, like, and so for example, you'll have situations where they convince people that it's okay for us to abuse these people or to kill these people. Because, you know, they're not Muslim, or they're, you know, they might call them Hawaii age, when they're not for weddings, but they, they make people hate them and think that these people are like terrorists, for example. And they're not terrorists, actually. And so, by using those type of, you know, terminologies, they basically make people think that they're covering the abuse that they're doing,

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they're covering the oppression, like, they're allowing, you know, people get convinced that these people are, you know, and then can extend like, they say, say terrorists, are they, they attack theories, and so it's all right for us to throw them into prison or to kill them. I mean, you said, look what happened to for example, the group of if one Muslim in, like, they were out protesting in Egypt, protesting doesn't make you from Hawaii cottage, you don't try to save but yet, they were shocked, like, how many of them were killed, for protesting. So and a lot of people say that, that they, they will condone that, because they were told by the rulers that that was okay. Because, you

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know, they tried to make it that islamically that was alright, did you know translates This, this, so even amongst rulers, we find that this brutal abuse.

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So we go on to the third category, which is concerning parents.

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And this is where, you know, this is what especially like not to say, fathers can't abuse but, you know, often we'll find that mothers will misuse, the great status and rights that Islam has given her as a mother to control even her adult children. So what happens is a very sad job relationship, it's very hard on the emotions, but instead of these men and women enjoying, you know, the selfless and unconditional love that most mothers give their children, they basically spend their whole lives trying to please someone who will never really be pleased with them, no matter how hard they try. So that's, that's actually very soul destroying.

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And what makes it worse, is that their failure to please is attached to so much guilt, because when they feel they haven't pleased their mother, they feel like they failed to please a lot, that that's why it's so soul destroying. And we will be very careful about this is not as you know, like, yes, look, sometimes obviously, you're going to remind your children of the dean, that's very different than now using the dean as a weapon of guilt and, and to control. Okay, so sometimes obviously, a husband is going to remind his wife of the dean that's different than using it as a weapon or a mother reminds her daughter or son of the dean, okay, that's nothing wrong with and reminding, but

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when you start to use it as a weapon to try to, you know, put guilt in them and control them that that's when you're overstepping the boundaries. So for example, you know, not long ago, I got asked by a mother, she was telling me you know, that, um, when her kids don't listen to her, she basically tells them, you know, when you don't listen to your mother allows nothing except your prayers.

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Jenna, Stan, so you can see how easy it is to start falling into that, like you might feel out of control with your child. But that doesn't mean now you start attaching that to, you know, trying to especially when they're young, trying to instill guilt in them that you know, you're gonna go to hell, Fire Nation isn't to me, you know, all of it except your prayers. Um, you know, if you don't listen to me, you won't go to Jana. So, you know, all this, like, attaching attaching that control to to their Deen is is is dangerous. Okay, so.

00:34:14--> 00:34:15

And, um,

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and so what we find with some relationships is you have mothers who over demand from their children, like there's not it's like, there's no boundaries. There's no respect for privacy. And, you know, you hear lots of stories where the mother, she will demand to go out with her son everywhere he goes, like he, the wife and husband don't even have time to be alone. You know, me because she's the mother, she has the right to do whatever she wants. And so she might even let them be alone. And that's not even normal, like for for for a mother to be that much into her son's life. You know, so some of them own completely

00:35:00--> 00:35:10

To overstep their boundaries, and if you find some of them, like they have a complete emotional hold over their son or daughter, and so you'll find them don't make

00:35:12--> 00:35:12

that some of

00:35:13--> 00:35:32

them are done so much to please their mother. But yet, the minute they do one little thing wrong, she'll start making against them, she might curse them, she might be saying to them, I was never gonna forgive you. And so she's using all these type of, you know, emotional abuse, to basically control and manipulate them.

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And all of that abuse is justified, why? Because she says, I'm your mother.

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I'm your mother. And so basically, she's giving herself the ultimate authority to do whatever she wants without accountability. Okay, so.

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And one thing to comment on here is, you know, you find that upon a lot of people in general are more empathetic, about men being abusive, when it comes to men being abusive. People are a lot more empathetic with that. But when it comes to parents,

00:36:08--> 00:36:49

in many cases, people don't realize how soul destroying that can be, you know, and usually, if somebody is complaining about their parents, what are they told in response? You know, these are your parents, you know, you have to have mercy with them, you have to be kind to them. Now, of course, we have to be merciful to our parents have to be kind, but understand how when somebody has been so merciful and over over kind, they're practically given their whole self to that person. And yet, there's no, there's absolutely no respect. In return, there's absolutely no, you know, it's only they only you're only important to them, when you can do something for them. But when you can't

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do something for them, you're not important to them anymore. generous. So it's not a true though, it's more like a selfish type of love. It's not a, it's not a selfless type of love that what you expect to find amongst a mother, usually a mother, she wants what's happy for her children, you know, what makes her children happy, that's her, seeing her children happy, makes her happy. But in this relationship, she's only happy as long as you're making her happy. But if you don't make her happy, she's not happy.

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Did you know the difference. And so that's what she's using the religion to manipulate.

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And then we go the next category, which relate to that, and that is the mother in law. Because mother, so these, I'd say, looking at this, if I put them in order, I'd say the first one was, the main law I see is the husband's using spiritual abuse. Next in line is the mother in law. And then after that mother's, and now and will many mothers and community figures, they kind of like on the same around about the same intensity here what I find, okay, so talking about the mother in law, this is where the mother of the husband, she uses her authority and control to basically manipulate and cause harm to her daughter in law, but she uses the religion to do that. So some of them because

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they feel like, you know, I am the mother, you know, Allah gave me this position as the mother.

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And so therefore, I have all the rights even ever my daughter in law, I have all the rights. So and this happens a lot as the sisters here from say, Pakistan and Bangladesh will tell you in the subcontinent in particular, it happens a lot, because what happens is, they get married to to to their husbands, but then the mother in law, she thinks it's her right to boss, her daughter in law around and the daughter in law is basically her slave, like, you know, is that basically what happens is a lot of these cases, you know, instead of paying someone to come and do your clean your house and cook for you, they basically get their son married, and that, that wife, she's doing

00:38:59--> 00:39:39

everything in the house, even looking after his parents, the mother and the father, even the sister in law will be so sick, they're not doing anything. And that wife is made to do everything and then they're constantly complaining. You're not good enough. What kind of glasses are you? You know, all these this is what this is where a lot of women are going through all right, and I this isn't just happened at the scenes like I recently had a situation of a system which was very disturbing. where her mother in law, as soon as she had her baby, her mother in law took the baby away from her imagine that took the baby away and told, you know her son and her daughter in law that I'm the

00:39:39--> 00:40:00

mother I have, I have the greatest right over this baby. So she's gonna look after the baby the whole time she and sometimes the mother would be holding up the you know, the daughter in law would be holding her baby. She just can't whenever she wants, takes it snatches the baby off her lap and goes away with the baby and takes it away and is basically telling the doctor

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This is my right because it's technically, I'm the mother. And so therefore I have, you know, I have the authority to, to do whatever I want basically, you understand and she's telling her daughter in law that any advice you do go anywhere you any come to me

00:40:16--> 00:40:42

see how see how they use the seeds. So we're gonna realize it's not just men who will use religion to, to control or manipulate even women, they are women and it all comes down to really what I say abusive personalities, when someone's got an abusive personality, they're going to use whatever they can, they'll use, whether it's physical, whether it's emotional, financial, you know, although you're spiritual, that's what it comes down to.

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Alright, and now I'm going to move on and talk about who are the most vulnerable, who are the most vulnerable, because this is helpful to us to realize why we might find ourselves in this type of situation. So first and foremost, who, from from who is most vulnerable? Are those who you know, they lack knowledge of the religion, if you don't know your religion? Well, it's very easy for someone to tell you well, this is what Islam says, I have that authority. And this is what Islam says. And you believe that because you don't have much knowledge of the religion, especially and that's my next point. If you're a revert, in particular, you'll find revert, often very, very often

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will find themselves in abusive marriages in particular, and not know how to navigate that because the man's telling her that islamically, this and islamically that and so she doesn't know what her rights are. So if you don't know your rights in Islam, you don't know your boundaries. That's the problem. If you don't know your rights in Islam, you don't know what your boundaries are, you don't know what is actually your right, and what is your responsibility? And where does your responsibility end? Do you not try to say it's very important for you know, where is my responsibility end? And what is really my duty, and what is something that's extra for me, it's not

00:42:06--> 00:42:07

my duty.

00:42:08--> 00:42:45

Okay? another of those who are more vulnerable, or those who live isolated away from their family. So often find women who are being abused are, for example, or their families in Lebanon, and they're alone here and may not speak English very well, as well. You know, I mean, a real cool, good Bangladeshi sister, same thing, she's all her family's in Bangladesh. And she's he by herself. And she doesn't speak very good English. And so she's isolated. And because of that, she might find herself in abusive marriage, and the men can do whatever he wants, there's no family around to talk to or to protect her or, you know, she hasn't got that support.

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Another of those who are vulnerable are, in particular, sincere people who want to do the right thing. Like they want to avail law, like they've got that sincerity in the deen. And they're worried about a lot asking them about their duties on your Akiyama. So because they've got such sincerity.

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That's why those people are able to manipulate them through the religion. Because obviously, if you've got someone who's very sincerely trying to do the right thing, you can see how it's very easy for someone to come along and use a few is a few headaches, and make that person feel guilty. And you understand. So that's why

00:43:25--> 00:44:05

another are the kind and generous and self sacrificing people who they don't tend to respect their own boundaries. So some people are very, you know, very self sacrificing, they want to just give and give and give, and they're very kind, but they don't know that you have rights to it, you know, no relationship is all about give, and no take. every relationship is about give and take, and you shouldn't be completely giving where you're absolutely exhausted, and you're not having your rights and your boundaries also respected as well that you know, there's something not right, it's become a toxic relationship, were in a situation where you're just the only one giving into, you know,

00:44:05--> 00:44:08

dealing in this relationship, and you're not taking anything in return.

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Also, those who come from families who are abusive, like if you've come from abusive home, then it I I do believe that it makes it a lot harder for you to recognize abuse, because you take abuse as normal. And in my time, I've seen many situations of sisters who are in very abusive marriages. But unfortunately, when they go to their parents, and tell their mom and dad, this is what's happening to me with my husband, they say, Look, just go back Be patient, you know, like, and, and so because because the mother was abused, their father was abusive, and so it's become normal. And so when she goes and tries to talk to a family about what's happening to her, they'll say that's normal. My

00:44:53--> 00:45:00

daughter, you know what I mean? And unfortunately, they're not standing by their daughter that's that's also very dangerous.

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So you're going to realize, if you have come from, you know, an abusive type of home, I do say to sisters, it's, I would highly recommend, to, to go and get that professional counseling to try to deal with things that you've gone through, through being brought up in that type of home, because you'd be surprised has a lot of baggage, like subconscious baggage that you carry with you. And that you may not be able to see the red flags very easily, when that man comes along with charm, you can't see the red flags of that he's actually got some very abusive traits that you're not picking up on. Because you, that's what you've got used to, in your childhood, for example. So it's very

00:45:41--> 00:45:45

important, I believe, to go and try to, you know,

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address certain things within yourself that you might accept lowest standards for yourself, because of coming home from an abusive home to start off with. And the other problem with coming from an abusive background is that very often, you have a low self esteem or a low self worth, that you actually accept lower standards that you accept being spoken to, in a way that somebody with the highest self esteem would not accept being spoken like that, you know. So, um, but you know, to end this part of the conversation, let's just say that, you know, as I said before, that anyone in any type of relationship where there's an imbalance of power or authority, you can find yourself in that

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you can find yourself in an abusive situation, even if you're a strong person, like he might have come from a very strong home. But just because you find yourself in a situation where there's an imbalance of authority or power, you could still find yourself in a situation of abuse of sucked up some type.

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Okay, um, okay, so what can we do about this from an Islamic perspective?

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So prominently semi perspective, of course, is, I've already mentioned to you that what I believe if you've got that happening, I would definitely encourage anyone to see a counselor or a psychologist, you know, qualified one to sort of go through what you're, you know, going through with you what you're going through, and because, you know, how there's that had, the author also said that, and what me is not beaten, is not beaten by what is it the same, you know, you don't fall into the same hole twice, you know, I mean, not beaten twice. So if you've gone through this before, we need to, we need to be able to, it's important for us to go through and study,

00:47:33--> 00:47:56

you know, what is abuse? Why is it possible that I might be more vulnerable to getting into an abusive type of relationship? You know, and if I've already gone through an abusive marriage, is it possible that I might be more a person who's more prone for some reason or another, to actually accept abuses subconsciously. So it's very important for you to go through some self

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discovery of what they might be dead, you might need to strengthen up within yourself become more resilient and become more self loving, know, your self worth, you know, what I'm trying to say, and those things need therapy. But anyway, in saying that, I'm spreading knowledge helps a lot, you know, knowing your rights in Islam, like Alhamdulillah, our knowledge has been a lot more now in our community. And so I think women have a lot better understanding of their rights in Islam compared to in the past, but where you have communities where they don't have as much knowledge, you'll see this, I believe, you're going to find a lot more abuse happening behind closed doors, and she's not

00:48:37--> 00:48:38

knowing what to do about it.

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The other thing is to make victims realize that accountability is a two way street, it's not all you is going to be asked by law about everything, and he or she is not going to be asked about a law about what they're doing. So like, they'll try to make you feel so guilty, that you're not good enough, I was never gonna be pleased with you those kind of messages. But what they're doing as well, they're going to be asked by last panel about that they have just because they may have some authority over you, or some rights over you does not give them the it does not give them you know, the absolute authority to do whatever they want to you and speak to you however they like. And we

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have to realize that Islam gave rights to everybody. Okay, Sam gave rights to everybody and those rights over boundaries. Okay, those rights in Islam are your boundaries. And no one has absolute authority simply because they're male, or because they're more religious or they have a greater power or status. Right.

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So we have to realize is no absolute unrestricted obedience also to any creative being, you know, what is what is the profit sort of like us and tell us led by into the mouth move in Panama City harlot, like there's no there's no obedience to the

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creation in the disobedience of a law.

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So, and the other thing is that the more authority someone has, the more

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the more rights they have over someone, the greater their accountability is, the more they're going to be asked bilasa cantata about that authority that they had. So, so you understand, so we have to put things into perspective.

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So in finishing up, you know, finishing up, just to say that, you know, regardless, regardless of the rights that a person has been given in Islam, no one has been given a free license to emotionally abuse, harm or oppress anyone else due to that status. That's what I want to basically speak to you about today.