Alaminah Abussalam

From Philippines

Back Story…

By "coif" I mean hairdo, style or the arrangement of someone's hair. Now with the question raised in the workshop:  What does it mean to you to be a Muslim woman today?, I chose veil (the object which I am bringing in the pictures attached in my first email) to represent my strongest identity as a Muslim woman because for me, to be a Muslim woman today does not mean that I have to forsake my religion to do things which people dictate me to do or which I feel the need of doing. And like veil, although a lot of people  misconceive veil as something that hinders someone to show her beauty, I still see things differently because a veil (for me) is something that protects me and reminds me to do things righteously,  it is something that protects me from the evil eyes of people. So like a veil, I personally show people that as a Muslim woman, I need not to submit myself to the society's standard of beauty because I have my own, I need not to forsake my religion just to do things which I actually do not have to do (just to please people). As a Muslim woman, I want to tell the world that by wearing this piece of cloth, it doesn't oppress me, it doesn't limit me to do things, and it doesn't confine me to the four corners of my room. Because this piece of cloth in my head is not used as a fashion, decoration or to beautify me more, there is life behind this piece of cloth, a life of a happy Muslimmah. Thus, for me, to be a Muslim woman today means to be able to fight the temptations of this world while finding and achieving real happiness, higher form of happiness with everything we have and anything we do.


Alaminah Abussalam is a Muslima Ambassador.