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Biological and Psychological Differences between Man and Woman

Psychologists and doctors say that there are axiomatic scientific differences between man and woman. In other words they say that man and woman have different biological and psychological differences. Accordingly, the social function of the woman is different of that of the man. Hence, social life is righteous when man maintains his manhood and woman maintains her womanhood. Scientific studies have shown that the hormones of the ductless glands take part in forming the behavioral and psychological differences between the man and the woman. In the meantime, the nervous system participates in that too.

The Holy Qur'an has explained these differences between man and woman. It says: "And covet not that by which Allah has raised some of you above others; for men shall have of what they earn; and women shall have of what they earn; and ask Allah of His Grace; verily, Allah knows all things." Holy Qur'an (Nisa' 4:32)

Moreover, the purified Prophetic traditions (Sunnah) underline that both man and woman should preserve their gender. It prevents women from imitating men. Meanwhile, it prevents men from imitating women.

Psychological studies and experiments were applied on psychological deviation of both men and women. They have shown that some men try to imitate women, and some women try to imitate men. They have indicated that this state is a kind of deviation, and that this state may be controlled and treated through education, social measures, and reorganization of the character.

The holy traditions have scorned and cursed such people.

The great traditionist and jurist, Hurr Amily, may Allah have mercy on him, has mentioned numerous traditions under the title: "It is not permitted for women to imitate men and vice versa."

It was reported on the authority of Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.) and Abu Hassan al-Rida (a.s.), who said: "I hate that men imitate women." 8 The meaning of hatred here is prohibition or not permitted as it has been mentioned in the tradition cited above.

It was reported on the authority of Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.), on the authority of Allah's Apostle Muhammad (s.a.w.), who said: "Allah's Apostle scorned the man who imitates women, and prevented the woman who imitates men in her clothes." 9

(It was reported) on the authority of Ibn Abbas, who said: "Allah's Apostle (s.a.w.) cursed the men who imitated women and the women who imitated men." 10

These differences between man and woman force us to admit that there are functional differences in some of the vital fields and duties which the man and woman should perform.

According to this discussion, we are able to limit the differences between the man and woman in social function.

8. Hur Amili, Wasa'il Shia, Kitab Salat, Abwab Ahkam Libas, Chapter 13.

9. Ibid.

10. Bukhari, Sahih, vol.7, p.55.

Adopted from the book : "Woman and Society" by : "Al-Balagh Foundation"

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