Thursday, June 05, 2008

Heat Advisory

According to the Wikipedia entry for Severe weather terminology, a heat advisory is:

Extreme heat index making it feel hot, typically between 105 °F to 110 °F (40 °C to 43 °C) for 3 hours or more during the day and at or above 75 °F (24 °C) at night. Specific criteria varies over different county warning areas.

After several months of light spring weather here in Raleigh, temperatures comfortably below 80F through much of May, the first few days of June have shockingly jolted into 90's, prompting weathermen to issue a heat advisory.

But yesterday a sister posted a reminder about the warm weather. A reminder that with rising temperatures, people shed their clothes and tend to act more shamelessly, presenting Muslims with a greater fitnah around them. It was a reminder that Allah is All-Aware, that He knows our struggle, and a reminder that the fire of Hell is hotter than what we might be suffering here on earth.

Sisters in hijab around here often get remarks like, "Aren't you hot in that?" and of course we're all hot. But there are some benefits of covering up in the summer. Loose clothes (and our clothes should be loose anyway) are cool and breezy. If they are loose, they allow sweat to be effective in cooling the body and trap cooler air. Not to mention getting good air circulation from loose-fitting pants, skirts, and loose long sleeves--they also protect the skin from the harsh light of the sun, even better than sunblock!

For someone like me, with very fair skin, that's important to protect against sunburn in the short term, and skin cancer in the long term. Alhamdulillah, I haven't had to suffer sunburn, except on my face, since I started wearing hijab.

So anyway, covering in light, loose clothes might even be cooler than uncovering. But since most people do take the heat as an opportunity to go about half-naked, we as Muslims should all try to lower our gaze.

9 comments:

L_Oman said...

I agree with you about the sunblock part of it, but dear let me tell you that it is HOT under an abaya. I never got that air-conditioning effect with mine and I have probably 10 different types of flowy fabrics! :)

p.s. I live in the mid-east and the other day the temps were at about 120.

Amy said...

Well if it's 120, it's going to be hot whether you're wearing an abaya or not! :P

But if you don't believe me... trying wearing jeans and a sweater under that abaya.

I have a couple jilbabs, and honestly the time I wear them the most frequently is in Ramadan. Even though Ramadan has been in the late fall the last couple years, last year (and it'll probably be worse this year) it was still unpleasantly warm a lot of the time. And in the masjid we didn't always have great air circulation. But wearing a jilbab was better for me than some other clothes like I'd wear during the day (when I'd have strong A/C), making it easier to stand around.

I didn't mean to imply that wearing something flowy is going to make you feel not hot... but it is certainly cooler than many of the alternatives. Including, at times, bare skin.

And then again I could still be wrong... lol...

L_Oman said...

Amy - I know what you mean - I totally got your point. Just wanted to let you know I am melting....HA HA HA HA.

eyes serene said...

Assalamu alaikom,
We went to a parade downtown about a week ago and I was really surprised by some of the sights but I was even more surprised to see men taking pictures of these sights. (I know perverts exist but I was surprised at how many men I observed doing this!) That's enough to convince me to stay modestly dressed right there! Yuck! Anyway, I find that a shirt and skirt combo work better for catching a breeze than does a dress/abaya. I dunno why.

Sarah said...

AsSalam Alaikum

MAshallah nice post

yeah u r very ture indeed..
i started hearing hijab few months ago n few days back i tryed to cover my face aswell...but i dont know wat happended?! i cudnt breath in it..n the next day i didnt wore it...

wat shud i do any suggestions??

n i always hear from my sister tht shes do proper hijab in winter...

may Allah guides As All.

Sarah said...

AsSalam Alaikum

MAshallah nice post

yeah u r very ture indeed..
i started hearing hijab few months ago n few days back i tryed to cover my face aswell...but i dont know wat happended?! i cudnt breath in it..n the next day i didnt wore it...

wat shud i do any suggestions??

n i always hear from my sister tht shes do proper hijab in winter...

may Allah guides As All.

Jamilah said...

Asalamu Alaikum Sarah

I wear a viel (niqab) and sometimes it is a bit hard to breath but I switched to ones that had a cotton or linen lining on the face veil part and its not a problem at all. I like the ones that have 3 layers, and you throw two of them over your head... that way nothing is too tight over your face, it really hangs pretty loose.

Inshallah that helps.

Jamilah

Amy said...

Wa alaikum as-salam Sarah

I think Jamilah left you a good response to your comment. The key to staying cool and covering is to make sure the fabrics are breathable and loose. For example, choosing cotton over polyester. I myself don't cover my face, so I can't speak much on the difficulty of breathing with it on. But as far as covering my legs, arms, and head, wearing light fabrics that are loose and breathable is nice. I tend to avoid black personally, I feel like the fabric gets hotter to the touch than lighter colors.

And most importantly, ask Allah (SWT) to make it easy for you to follow this deen. If you take one step towards Him, it is like He will take 10 towards you.

In a Saheeh Hadith Qudsi on the authority of Abu Hurayrah, the Messenger of Allah (saaws) said that Allah (SWT) has said:

I am as My servant thinks I am (1). I am with him when he makes mention of Me. If he makes mention of Me to himself, I make mention of him to Myself; and if he makes mention of Me in an assembly, I make mention of him in an assemble better than it. And if he draws near to Me an arm's length, I draw near to him a fathom's length. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him at speed.

So start walking towards Allah (SWT) and you will find Him coming towards you.

Sarah* said...

Thank you so much ..Inshallah ur advice will help

Jazak Allah khair