A new Indonesia-based website Mubaadalahnews promotes justice and gender equality from an Islamic perspective. Inspired by the principle rahmatan lil ‘alamin, which means Islam is a religion that “brings grace and prosperity to the entire universe,” the Indonesian-language publication aims to popularize the values of gender justice, ranging from the practice of everyday life, family, to community and society.
Launched last year during the Women Ulema Congress (KUPI), Mubaadalahnews is initiated by Faqihuddin Abdul Kodir, founder of the Fahmina Institute, a non-profit organization that focuses on gender, democracy and pluralism from an Islamic perspective. The website is also supported by The Asian Muslim Action Network (AMAN Indonesia) and Umah Sinau Mubadalah (USM). The overall topics range from parenting, relationship between the sexes, education, interfaith relationship, to politics.
“We apply Islamic methodology to the principles and values of equality using Quran and Hadith as references,” Abdulloh, Mubdaadalahnews Social Media Manager and Contributor, told Magdalene in a phone interview.
“In addition to other sources of knowledge that are rooted in the Islamic tradition, we also use Islamic interpretation such as fiqh, tasawuf (Sufism),” he added.
For example, the article “Islam Menghargai Perempuan yang Bekerja” (Islam appreciates women who work), criticizes the social norms that believe a woman’s place is in the domestic sphere. The writer points out that Islam is a friendly religion that respects women who work. “Islam exists in the world to balance the unequal,” the writer wrote.
Another article, “Ayah Jangan Gengsi Memandikan Anak” (Dad, don’t be ashamed to bathe your child), highlights the importance of involving dads in child rearing. “Prophet Muhammad was also involved in the household. He sew and patched his own shoes,” the article goes. It quotes al-Bukhari Hadith, which encourages husbands to not feel inferior in helping their wife to do household chores.
“In the near future, gender equality theme is expected to be covered in many more topics,” said Faqihuddin in a statement on the website. “From humanity, the nation’s role in advancing access to legal justice for men and women issues, and also the sustainability of gender justice.”
The website offers columns, poetry, short fiction as well as profiles inspiring figures who played a role in supporting gender equality. The latter includes Indonesian national heroine Cut Nyak Meutia, feminist kiai Husein Muhammad, and young activist Malala Yousafzai.
Check out Mubdaadalahnews and like their Facebook page for more updates.
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