The boundaries between some key terms such as Shariʿah, fiqh and Islamic law are often blurred and confused in everyday language. This confusion contributes to gender inequality in modern family laws in ways that are detrimental to women. Attempts to reform state laws in the direction of justice and equality for women have been opposed by those who perceive them as going against Shariʿah. This video highlights why it is essential to distinguish between these terms in order to set the divine and eternal apart from the human and temporal.

This video has been translated and narrated into Dhivehi thanks to Uthema, a Maldivian NGO registered in 2016 with the Ministry of Home Affairs to advocate for gender equality and women’s empowerment in the Maldives. You may find Uthema on Youtube at @uthema or by visiting

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