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 Temptation-of-St-Anthony'The Tempation of St.Anthony'. Source: Wikipaintings

By Andaleeb Rizvi

I never understood this idea of 'temptation', it's so full of crap and one sided. It simply translates to a woman being a living temptation in the society. A society which wants to regulate everything when it concerns women, from the way we dress, to the way we talk, live, walk, sit, etc, etc. It begins with 'good girls' do not speak too much, give their opinions too much, wear short clothes, make their own decisions or worse of all demand to be treated equal to men and have sex.

In case you do not agree with this conditioning, you will be told that living as you please is a temptation for men. If you speak too much, a man might be tempted to shut you up by force. If you are too opinionated and wear short clothes, men might be tempted to think of you as an open minded whore, and end up raping you. And if you demand justice, remember it was you who tempted, and your value is half that of a male witness [Not just in Islam. Conviction rate of rapists in USA is a mere 6%], so the man will get away with a pat on the shoulder, because after all, it was your fault.

In short, your choices are, being a good girl and getting married, or, being the bad girl who is treated like a whore. If you are a 'good girl', people have authority over you to treat you like cattle, cover you up in layers of clothes and present you in a marriage market, where the highest bidder will get rights to plunder your body as he pleases. By the way, in more than 35 countries, marital rape is not considered a criminal offence. There are verses in the Quran that tell a man he can sow his seed in a woman as he pleases.

Point here being, "As the Man pleases". It begins and ends with pleasing men and is never about a woman's own choice. While we all live in a world full of temptations, and temptations could be of many kinds, when it comes to religion, it seems that the only temptation are us women. Even the way we breath can be termed a temptation by men. Christians have a little bit better in their Bible in the form of conjugal sexual rights. As long as your rapist is your spouse, its legal honey, bear with it.

Religion talks about us women along with cattle, land and possessions.

It seems that while the 'good girl' has the chances of getting raped by her spouse, the 'bad girl' is not safe either. The only difference is that the 'good girls' chances of getting raped are limited to one guy only, while the 'bad girls' can get it from anybody around them. Co-workers, random dudes roaming the street, boyfriends, even fathers. Actually, in my opinion this whole good and bad girl conundrum is just humbug. It is about men; when they want to be appeased, sated sexually is when they can decide about whether you are a good girl, or a bad one. Either way, we are temptress since Eve's time, who dared to pick the forbidden apple, and man has yet not forgiven us.

Here's what a sermon website has to say about temptation:

  1. Temptation is a process.
  2. Temptation comes from the enemy.
  3. Temptation comes in beautiful packages.
  4. Temptation hits us where we are weak.
  5. Temptation blinds us from reality.
  6. Temptation builds us up before knocking us down.
  7. Temptation plays on our emotions.
  8. Temptation, when given into, separates us from God.
  9. Temptation, when given into, makes us its slave.
  10. Temptation has a way of escape.

Andaleeb-Rizvi-2Andaleeb Rizvi is a feminist, freethinking architect, blogger who dabbles in journalism and anything that is worth taking an interest in. She teaches at Karachi University and believes in social justice and progressive politics.


Follow Andaleeb on Twitter @AndaleebRizvi


More blogs by Andaleeb on the Safe World website

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