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Modesty in Dress and Social Relationships

Many Muslims try to avoid places or media that feature scantily clad persons or actions that are considered offensive. Even family swimming pools may be off limits. The woman may be dressing hijab and covering her hair by way of normal practice when in the presence of men other than her father, husband, sons, or brothers. She will appreciate the family's help in providing a chance for her to cover if other male company drops by. It is also important to be aware of the type of television programs viewed when Muslim children are present. Some of the children's shows most American kids watch may not be considered appropriate for children by the Muslim mom and dad. Non-Muslims should find out what is allowable if the children are involved; even many Muslim adults don't allow themselves to watch everything that is on. Scenes that show dating relationships, dancing, or scantily clad women are common ones to avoid.

Islamically, I don't like for the children to watch commercials or dancing, rap music, dating situations, looseness on TV, anything which you can see by turning it on for two minutes or less. I would prefer they not get used to musical instruments or music which has adult rock -and-roll rhythm even if it has children's lyrics. My parents are pretty good about avoiding these things. There are also guidelines for male/female relating. Males do not shake hands with females and often will not look directly at them. Men should not reach out to touch Muslim women or be too openly curious or friendly. One should be reticent but pleasant. Usually, the safe approach is for the men to talk with men and the women to talk with women. Women will often greet other women with a cheek-to-cheek greeting.

Adapted from: "Daughters Of Another Path (Experience of American Women Choosing Islam)" by: "Carol L. Anway"

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