Re: Maid is euphemism for mistress - without question

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Posted by Simeon ( on December 22, 2002 at 11:53:57:

In Reply to: Maid is euphemism for mistress - without question posted by Stuart Gilman on December 22, 2002 at 04:48:48:


Your supposition that the reference to taking a maid under ones
service in the Kitab-i-Aqdas refers to a "mistress" is not borne out
by the notes provided to the text nor by Baha'u'llah's own answer. I
would think that His own answer should sufficiently explain what is
meant by a maid and her service in the text at hand.

The distinction with Islamic practice is that a man *could not* employ
a maid for *any* purpose unless he first married her. Baha'u'llah is
removing the requirement for marriage in order to employ a maid.
There is no implied sexual license here.


(from the notes to the Kitab-i-Aqdas)
90. he who would take into his service a maid may do so with propriety

Bahá'u'lláh states that a man may employ a maiden for domestic
service. This was not permissible under Sh’'ih Muslim practice unless
the employer entered into a marriage contract with her. Bahá'u'lláh
emphasizes that the "service" referred to in this verse is solely
"such as is performed by any other class of servants, be they young
or old, in exchange for wages" (Q&A 30). An employer has no sexual
rights over his maid. She is "free to choose a husband at whatever
time she pleaseth", for the purchase of women is forbidden (Q&A 30).

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