Recently, the recorded teachings of Umm Jamaal ud-Din, an Islamic preacher in Australia, has sparked major controversy. Her sermon about the sinfulness of Muslim women plucking their eyebrows was posted to YouTube for her followers to see, and it received some responses.
According to Daily Mail, “The Islamic instructor from western Sydney, who is also known as Mouna Parkin, said it was sinful, or haram, for women to pluck their eyebrows, even if they believed it was hygienic.” She believes that it is still a sinful act even if women claim plucking their eyebrows is nothing more than cleaning themselves.
Saira Khan, a television presenter in the UK, revealed her strong opinion in response to ud-Din’s preaching. According to Independent, she posted a photo of herself in a bikini on Instagram with the caption, “I woke up to news that a Muslim preacher is saying that ‘plucking eyebrows’ for Muslim women is a sin – here’s my response – kiss my 🍑 you backward prehistoric dinosaur!”
Khan currently works as a panelist on the UK television show, “Loose Women”. According to IMDB, the show is a “lively daytime TV show, in which four ‘loose women’ chat about news, issues, and life in general.” Based on this summary, the show appears to be about female adulterers discussing raunchy topics.
Whether or not Khan appears on the show as some sort of promiscuous panelist, her liberal opinion against extremism certainly gives her a lot to talk about on the show. She believes that women should not be told what they can or cannot wear or how they can groom themselves.
According to Express, Khan was angry to hear ud-Din preaching about the sin behind plucking eyebrows because it “makes women feel bad about themselves.” While Khan is proud to defend women who wish to choose what to wear and if they pluck their eyebrows, she has received major backlash for her Instagram post.
According to Independent, some people responded by defending the Australian preacher, stating, “It’s not about being backwards. Plucking eyebrows is a sin. Anything to attract yourself to the outside world is a sin…”
However, some of the comments were not so civil. Khan received a death threat from an Instagram user, ultimately telling her that she is not Muslim and she does not represent Islam, ending the comment with the threat: “If you value your life keep…out of Islam.”
The reporter screenshotted the comment and posted it to Twitter, tagging the Metropolitan Police in the post, reporting the commenter.
For the record, Khan is a Muslim woman. She said to Express, “I want people to know that I am a Muslim woman, I want to wear a bikini – I wear it with pride – I will pluck my eyebrows…” Many fans even praised her for being a Muslim woman and speaking out against the “misogyny” in the religion, according to Independent.
“My message to all of those people who try to use religion to hate others is: stop being cowardly…I am standing up for women who practise my religion, who are modern, who are progressive, who are actually quite scared to come out and say it because look at the response you get,” she said to Mirror.
Ironically, on Khan’s panelist biography on the Loose Women page, she claims that the one thing she could not live without is her tweezers. Despite her attachment to her tweezers, Khan truly believes that women should be free to choose what they wear and how they groom themselves.
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