posted on Apr, 2 2013 @ 11:45 PM
As Benevolent Heretic says, it is all in the translation and interpretation. There are two separate instances in the Quran that people take into
account on this subject. One (Surah Al-Nur, verse 31), which, while discussing the situation of what to do when you go to someone else's house (ask
permission, give salutations and wait for the response, etc.), it then, after exhorting both men and women to lower their gaze and guard their
modesty, says (with regards to women) to "not display their adornment except what is apparent" (as close as I can translate "la yubdina zinatahunna
illa ma zahara").
It isn't exactly clear what it means by adornment, but reading later in the same passage could suggest it to be jewellery. It is also not so clear
what "except what is apparent" refers to, it could have been an arabic expression, it could be something specific, it could be everything.
The other passage (Surah Al-Ahzab, verse 59) speaks of the wives and daughters of the Prophet, and the women of the believers to draw their "outer
garments" over themselves while out and travelling, so that they would be known, and not harassed. The word used here for "outer garments" is
"jalabeeb", which today (jilbab) means this sort of cloak type thing that covers the head and neck and upper body, but it is probably a fairly
recent invention. No idea what it originally could be, although some hadith suggest it covered the face.
Personally, in this day and age, whatever your interpretation of the verses, I find it a bit disturbing the amount of pressure put on women against
wearing such things (especially in Europe), under the guise of "freeing women". Seems a bit contradictory to free women by imposing what they can
and cannot wear.