“And when the news of (the birth of) a female (child) is brought to any of them, his face becomes dark, and he is filled with inward grief! He hides himself from the people because of the evil of that whereof he has been informed. Shall he keep her with dishonor or bury her in the earth? Certainly, evil is their decision.” (Quran 16:58-59)
This verse highlights the plight of women before the advent of Islam. During the period of ignorance properly is known. There is a story that reveals the depth of tragedy. The story in short is:
A man came to Prophet Muhammad and said: When I had not embraced Islam, a daughter was born to me and the culture demanded that I bury the daughter as soon as she was born and I did it while my daughter looked at me in disbelief.
When he finished his story, looked up and saw the Prophet Muhammad. The Prophet’s beard was soaked with tears and he said: “If He had been allowed to punish a person for his crimes before embracing Islam, that man would have been the first one to get punished.”
Such inhuman conditions ended with the advent of Islam because the position of women in Islam changed very much.
The Islam expressed that girls should be treated more kindly than boys. Consider the following traditions in this regard.
“Your daughters are your best children.” (Makarim al-Akhlaq, pp.219-220)
One who goes to the bazaar to buy a present for his family is like one who has given some charity to needy people. One must put a higher priority on giving gifts to his daughters over his sons… (Mustadrak al-Wasa’il, v.2, p.615)
Such view of Islam has deep meaning that need another opportunity to explain.