The word veil means to cover. But this topic relates to the veil of women. Different cultures and religions promote it, especially for women. But practise a veil is essential for women in Islam religion.
Veil cloth covers the head and shoulders of women. In eastern countries, the veil is often used especially for the face.
There are different types of veils that Muslim women may choose to wear.
Types of Veil:
Niqab means for a woman to cover her head and face, but her eyes remain to unveil. The shape of the Niqab veil is a loose garment. Indeed, it wraps the entire body of a woman from head to feet as a candy wrapper. And its wrapper is called Abaya, derived from the Arabic language.
We can see the example of wearing Abaya of ladies during our Umrah journey, especially at Al Haram mosque and Al Nabavi mosque. Use Abaya for women is not mandatory during Umrah, as wearing two unsewn white-coloured sheets is mandatory for men.
These ladies use it to cover their normal dress, and they consider that is an essential part of Ihram for them.
Umrah is no longer an off-limits trip for Muslims as various travel agencies have the best options and offers in the form of Umrah packages.
Hijab works for a woman to cover her hair and neck. Islamic rules are strict to use the veil from non-Mahram. Women who follow this type of veil leave their faces uncovered.
A headscarf is the best example of the hijab veil. Sometimes women use two headscarves to cover the neck and head. This type of veil is regularly used in Western countries as well as in some Arab countries.
Women who follow this type of veil cover themselves completely. Full covering here means covering the entire body and face, including the eyes. To see outside, a woman’s burka has a grill or mesh window through which she can see others, but others cannot see her eyes, while women in niqab keep their eyes uncovered.
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The use of the Burka is frequently experienced in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India countries.
In this type, a woman uses a long cloth as a chador to cover her head and body, and a shawl is also a type of chador.
A long headscarf and a short chador, the cloth is called a dupatta which covers the head and shoulders. It is commonly used in South and Asian countries and is usually paired with a matching outfit (Salwar and Kameez).
Social benefits of Veil for women:
1: Protects from Male-Harassment
2: Veil Represents Purity and Modesty
3: Wearing Veils eliminates competition amongst each other
4: A veil covers the parts of the body that arouse sexual desire in a non-mahram.
5: Veil increased self-esteem
6: Hygienic Purposes
Scientific Benefits of wearing Veil:
It protects a woman’s skin from the harmful rays of the sun and also protects women’s hair from pollution and dust.
According to medical experts, 40-60% of the heat goes through the head. A woman using any type of veil can protect herself from the heat.
Note: One of the main reasons and benefits of using the veil in our society is to protect a woman or girl from non-mahram (men).
Is it necessary for women to wear a veil like travelling with Mahram even if this travel is related to Umrah? So Umrah is a holy journey which is Sunnah. Today, it is much easier than in the olden days to join this journey through Umrah packages from reliable travel agencies.
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In some countries, the veiling of women is prohibited:
The veil is banned in public in this country. If a woman violates this law, she can face a fine of 150 euros, and anyone who forces a woman to cover her face will be fined 30,000 euros.
In 2011, Belgium banned the veil altogether. If a woman breaks this country’s law, she will face a fine of 1378 euros or 7 days in jail.
In 2015, the Netherlands partially banned the niqab such that women cannot wear the veil (face covering) in schools, hospitals and on public transport.
There are laws against the niqab and burqa in different parts of Catalonia, Spain. In 2013, Spain’s Supreme Court partially overturned the ban, but in 2014, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that the veil ban did not violate human rights.
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The veil has been banned in public places since 2015 to prevent terrorist attacks.