There are more than 6 billion people in the world. Some are tall; some are short, some are fat; some are thin. Some have black hair; some have fair hair. Some are dark-skinned; some are fair-skinned. Each person is unique, with his or her own physical features. Many different subjects are mentioned in the Qur’an in the course of inviting people to believe. Sometimes the Qur’an mentions the heavens, sometimes the animals, and sometimes the trees and plants. It also mentions many other things as evidence of Allah’s Greatness and Wisdom. The Qur’an calls us in many verses to reflect on our own creation and on anything Allah created. The creation of man and the miraculous aspect of this creation are stressed in many verses of the Qur’an. Some bits of information within these verses are so wonderful and detailed that it is impossible for a person living in the 7th century to have known them. Hence, it follows that the Qur’an is the Word of Allah! It is sent down by the Creator of man for man’s own guidance. Fingerprints Facts Let us consider the uniqueness of the fingerprints. The Qur’an says, “Does man think We will not assemble his bones? Yes, We are able even to put together in perfect order the very tips of his fingers.” (Surat al-Qiyaamah ) One feature that distinguishes you from everyone else is the pattern of the curved lines on the tips of your fingers. These patterns are different in every person, and no two people have the same fingerprints. The patterns of your fingerprints do not change, as you grow older, even if your skin becomes cracked and wrinkled with age. So your fingerprints can be used to identify you. Wherever you go, you tend to leave your fingerprints behind you. That is why fingerprints are widely accepted as a very important way of identifying people. The fingerprints are unique to its owner. Every person has a different set of fingerprints. All the people who have lived throughout history also had different fingerprints. Can fingerprints form by coincidence? It is interesting to note that two centuries ago fingerprints were not important. It was only in the late 1 9th century that fingerprints were discovered to be different from one person to the other. In the 7th century, the Qur’an pointed out that the fingerprints of human beings bear a unique characteristic. Allah said : “Does man think we will not assemble his bones? Yes, we are able even to put together in perfect order the very tips of his fingers.” (Surat al-Qiyaamah) What does this show? This clearly shows that the Qur’an is the Word of Allah. Every bit of information and description of the Qur’an is true because every verse of it, every syllable of it, every particle of it is from Almighty Allah. It also shows that Allah is Great and Wise and creates everything in the best of forms and shapes. Exercises A. Answer these questions. 1 . What answer does the Qur’an give to those who think it is impossible to be raised after death? 2. Do fingerprints change as we grow older? 3. When did man discover fingerprints, and when did the Qur’an mention them? 4. What do the wonderful design of fingerprints point to? B. Activity 1. Apply watercolour to your fingers and mark prints on paper. Now compare your prints with those of your friends. Are any of the patterns identical? Islamic Dress Code Who is not interested in clothes? Young people nowadays seem very concerned about being in style, because they consider this one of the requirements for acceptance by other boys and girls – whose acceptance means so much to them. But our real joy lies in Allah’s acceptance of us! Unfortunately, it is easy for some of us to confuse real happiness with glittering-but-quickly-vanishing ‘fun’ that leaves us downright unhappy. Islam requires us to be careful about our appearance. It wants us to dress decently. It wants us to enjoy what Allah has created for the purposes of dressing and adornment. Clothes in Islam have two main purposes: to cover the body and to beautify the appearance. There are three types of clothes: Those which Allah has declared unlawful for everyone; Those which He has declared unlawful for certain individuals but not for others; and Those which He has disapproved. 1 . The first type of clothes that have been declared unlawful for everyone are those that are wrongfully obtained by such acts as stealing. 2. An example of those which have been declared unlawful for certain individuals and not for others is silk. Silk is permissible for women but not for men. 3. Those that are disapproved are those going to extravagant lengths, to the point where they amount to boastfulness and arrogant pride. Matters of dress have two sides: One of them is related to the right of Allah, while the second is related to the right of man. As for the side relating to the right of Allah, it is the concealing of the private parts (awrah) from the eyes of people. As for the side pertaining to the rights of humans, it is that which provides protection from the heat, the cold and all kinds of things that can be harmful. It is not right for men to imitate women’s style of dress. Likewise, it is not right for women to imitate the style of men. The Prophet () cursed the person who would do such a thing. He warned us against it with dire threats. It is also reprehensible to wear any kind of dress which is so transparent that the body can be seen through it. If the private parts (awrah) are visible through it, the wearer is a sinner. He is an immoral person. On one occasion, Asmaa’ bint Abu Bakr was visiting her sister A’ishah , wife of the Prophet (), when he noted that Asmaa’s dress was not thick enough. He turned his face away in anger and said, “If the woman reaches the age of puberty, no part of her body should be seen but this, and he pointed to his face and hands.” We should clearly keep it in mind that the choice of clothes shouldn’t first be governed by what one likes best or what is least expensive, but by the unchanging principles of modesty. Modesty is one of the most delightful characteristics of a woman. The girl who dresses modestly and tastefully shows her refinement. Immodesty in dress cannot be considered elegant. It is mostly vulgar. Some Requirements in Dress according to the Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Prophet () 1 . The covering of awrah. Awrah refers to the parts of the body that should be covered at all times. The covering of awrah is also a necessary condition for the validity of prayers for both men and women. Awrah for men is defined as the area between the navel and the knees. For women the awrah is defined as the whole body except for the face and the hands. Hence, men and women should fully cover their awrah. 2. Clothes should be loose enough so as not to reveal what they are covering (the awrah). 3. They should be thick enough so as not to reveal the colour of the skin or the parts required to be covered. 4. A woman should not wear a man’s clothes, nor should a man wear a woman’s clothes. An aspect of such imitation includes the manner of speaking, walking, dressing and moving. 5. They should not be clothes of fame, pride and vanity. In addition to the above conditions, men are not allowed to wear silk and gold. This, however, does not apply to women. Exercises A. Fill in the blanks with suitable words. 1 . is permissible for women but not for men. 2 . in dress cannot be considered elegant. B. Write a brief note on the requirements of dress in Islam. C. Name the following: 1 . The two purposes of clothes 2. The three types of clothes 3. The two sides of clothes D. Answer these questions. 1 . Explain the Arabic term awrah. What is the awrah for men and women? 2. What governs the choice of clothes? 3. What does a girl who dresses modestly prove?