How are women seen in Islam?
While the complete opposite is believed by the public, the Quran clearly states that both men and women are equal in the eyes of God. This includes the reward for good conduct and the punishment for bad conduct. It is believed that men and women have different purposes.
"Enter into Paradise, you and your wives, with delight."
Culture vs. Religion
Many mix the idea of religion and culture with discussing Islam. Though women have the right to choose whom they marry, whom they divorce, to study, to own property, to conduct business and to take part in politics.. In fact the Prophet Muhammed’s first wife was a successfully business owner, with the Prophet working under her prior to their marriage.
"Wives have rights corresponding to those which the husbands have, in equitable reciprocity, though, in certain situations men would have the final word and would thus enjoy a preference."
"Men are the caretakers of women, as men have been provisioned by Allah over women and tasked with supporting them financially."
A very famous saying of the Prophet Muhammed (SAW) describes how women, specifically mothers are viewed in Islam:
“Heaven lies beneath the feet of mothers”
It is a huge misconception that the Quran permits hitting your wife, this is simple false. As you have read from the verses above the Quran highly regards women and commands men to protect and cherish them. The prophet Muhammed himself condoned hitting your wives.
"Shall I not inform you about the best treasure a man can hoard? It is a virtuous wife who pleases him whenever he looks towards her, and who guards herself when he is absent from her."