On Saturday 12th March, Al-Mahdi Institute held a public discussion on gender equality in Islam entitled ‘#AreWeEqual’. Inviting neighbours, local communities, AMI students, faculty and the general public.
The aim of the event was to encourage audience participation with an interactive voting session to try and gage how the general public actually feel about equality issues that have an impact on their lives.
With an impressive turnout of over 100 people, the programme initiated with panel discussions on the following topics;
– ‘Does Islam give the same rights to men and women’ presented by Ummulbanin Merali
– ‘Rights of women in Islam, through an existential framework’ presented by Shaykh Arif Abdulhussain
– ‘Who suffers more in the current islamophobic climate, men or women?’ Presented by Nazmina Dhanji
Which was followed by a question and answer session actively participated in by the audience raising issues such as ”Why is it left to the women to discuss gender issues?”
The second half of the event labelled by the audience as the ‘fun’ part, taken from “Apprentice, you’re fired!’’ featured contemporary questions posed as scenario’s in which we asked the audience to vote either ‘yes’ or ‘no’ followed by the panelists vote. There were some questions where there was a big difference between how the audience voted and our scholars.
The evening drew to a close with remarks by Mahdiya Jaffer, a recent AMI graduate who shed light on the disparity between how the general public voted and view their religion in comparison to the scholars. She concluded with “either we need our scholars to explain and teach the reasons for certain rulings in a way we understand or alternatively these genuine contemporary concerns need to be readdressed and reinterpreted by the scholars”. An insightful and engaging evening!
To view more images from the event click here
To view a video of the event click here