Religion conveys the principles of ‘faith’ and in fact, every religion has a different cultural practice. Recently, young Muslim girls covered up their bodies in white as a part of hijab ceremony in Sydney’s south-east, on March 31 and people were confused whether it was a marriage ceremony.
However, it should be noted that this practice is done to signify age. Australia’s most senior Shia cleric Sheikh Kamal Mousselmani took over the ceremony where as many as 24 girls walked on stage to show their maturity, which is why they were dressed in white (looks a bit similar to that of the wedding dress).
“The hijab is compulsory for the girls when they become nine according to our religion,’ he told Daily Mail Australia.
Sheikh Mousselmani had denied the ceremony was about preparing girls for marriage, despite the Islamic law adding that girls reach maturity at the age of eight.
‘You want me to tell you that it was a marriage ceremony. Definitely not,’ he said. ‘It’s a white colour, it’s a happy colour.’
However, Adelaide Shia leader Imam Shaikh Mohammad Tawhidi added that Islam classified eight as the adult age for girls and was worried by the ceremony’s symbolism.
‘I confirm that according to Islamic jurisprudence, a Muslim girl reaches the stage of maturity at eight to nine years of age,’ he said.
‘Hence the celebration took place, which means that they’re no longer girls but adult females who would lead an adult life, including marriage.
‘This goes against the Australian values and social ethics and is basically promoting and imposing Sharia law in Australia.’
The 34-year-old Iranian-born religious leader further added that girls would literally have no idea how the ceremony symbolised them reaching adulthood.
‘The lives of those girls change from that point onwards and they’re treated as adults,’ he said.
Sheikh Mousselmani had confirmed that girls were considered mature in Islam only when they are at the age of 9.
‘When the girl becomes nine or nine-and-a-half, we say they become eligible for hijab and we organised a party,’ he said.
(With inputs from Daily Mail)