Community Women

Introducing a New Series: Reconstructing Beauty

Reconstructing Beauty Series: Part I | Part II | Part III | Part IV | Part V Part VI

We live in a time of incredible focus on physical appearances and image.  In our upcoming series Reconstructing Beauty – to be posted every Wednesday for the next five weeks, inshaAllah – some of our best writers here at will be exploring an array of topics related to beauty, image and perception.

Jinan Yousef, author of many of our most popular series, including an ongoing feature on the Names of God, will begin by discussing Divine beauty, beauty from the perspective of the Divine, and the prophetic tradition that teaches us, “God is beautiful and loves beauty.”

In her usual poignant style, Naiyerah Kolkailah will reflect on the personal and larger effects of our perceptions of beauty, and contrast popular standards and expectations of image to those based on religious precepts.

Author and translator Amatullah will offer us glimpses into the lives of some amazing women from the history of our religious tradition, women who perhaps had a different, more spiritually grounded perspective of what a beautiful woman is and should be.

Shazia Ahmad will give a critical analysis of our culture’s fixation on youth and youthfulness, and how this relates to our perceptions of age, maturity and wisdom.

Finally, teacher and upcoming al-Azhar University graduate Muslema Purmul will conclude the series with some profound reflections on modesty and self-awareness, and their connections with gender relations in a Western context.

From popular perceptions of beauty and image to deeper and alternate definitions of what and who can truly be considered beautiful, we hope to begin a deeper discussion on beauty in the Muslim and larger community, and offer an understanding of it renewed and reconstructed.


About the author



  • Wow; sounds like a great series. May Allah reward all of you immensely for your efforts; and may many people benefit from it all.

    It is baffling how many people here in America for example will label a modestly dressed Muslim woman as being oppressed…but how about the oppression of women to wear close to nothing to attract the opposite sex, to get attention and ‘respect’..subjugating their bodies to the societal construct that women must wear less, reveal more and look a certain way to reflect ‘liberation’ and ‘freedom’ of their bodies. Forget character, forget intelligence, forget respect, love, value and appreciation for everything except for the lines of one’s body…

    …that’s what I call oppression.

  • Mashallah !!! ds is indeed a topic needed to b discussed widely to make our young generation aware…..they have taken up role models of women who indeed r d dwellers of hell….haya is far far away from their understanding….ppl in d true sense have forgotten what beauty is… v r beautiful on d inside it reflects on
    d outside.

  • Mashallah, this sounds like a very interesting and informative series! I will be looking forward to reading the rest of the series. Indeed oue society does place a great emphasis on physical beauty instead of focusing on the deeper aspects of an individual. Just this morning I was watching tv and they were praising Katy Perry for simply going without makeeup. One of the hosts even said that she should be given a purple heart for this act. To me this really demonstrated our society’s obsession with beauty.

  • Love the idea, but I think it would be cool to have some men write on the issue as well as it effects all. There should be brothers advising other brothers on what traps of beauty not to fall into when getting married. Perhaps someone could also reflect on the major opinion prevalent across many cultures that the wife should always be lohter than the husband.

    • as salaamu alaykum,

      This is obviously a huge topic in which there are many issues that need to be discussed and explored from different perspectives; we decided on taking just a first step with a small group of authors touching on a few of these important issues. Imam Suhaib may also be contributing with an interesting piece on conceptions of masculinity so stay tuned 🙂

Leave a Comment