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    ( By GRD )
  • The article exposes the shameless double standard of these countries when it comes to dishing out punishment for criminals of migrant communities even when the ...
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  • The little boy is still running scared. Ilm al kalam is truly ilm al kamal. Try to drown what you cannot answer under mountains of irrelevancies.,....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • The fault with the reasoning of the imams lies in their saying “as the Shirk (idolatry or polytheism) which he/she already professes, is far more ...
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  • Dear Zohara, Thank you for your words. The purpose of writing this piece is to remove the bhoot ....
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • It is also not necessary for him to make unnecessary comments which merely lead to tautology and wearisomeness. Instead he should turn away from ....
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  • Islam should drop its political side and adopt democratic values.'
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  • He who is interested in knowing the details of Ahkam Al-Shariya, it is extremely necessary for him to study the usul/rules/methods which are the results ...
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  • It is very shocking to see few people blindly criticizing methodology of hadith [usul al-hadith] as a result of their lack of understanding. They do ...
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  • GM sb, You are dodging the question. My explanation is very clear. The meaning of Islam is inclusive of all faith systems that require ...
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  • Re: Bangladeshi Muslim cleric asks Muslim parents to prevent their daughters from schooling beyond primary level. Muhibul Hasan Chowdhury, the state Minister for education ....
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  • GM sb, You are mixing up love of God with "Light of God". You may see in...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Actually, it is GM sb who is telling a blatant lie. I did not say that he has “denied”. I only said that he is ...
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  • Naseer sb., If you want to go by your understanding of the verse, you must at the same....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sb., is lying again! When did I deny saying, "“4:34 is not about disloyalty or adultery. It is about obedience and....
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  • Naseer sb., Since we are living in India we have to discuss laws....
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  • Naseer sb., Thanks for showing examples of how the phrase "Light of God" is used in the Quran. I had said, "For.....
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  • Jihad is best considered an obsolete concept.
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  • This article of Mr. Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi is very nice.
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  • Enlightening article, especially the duplicity of Pakistan'
    ( By Awadh )
  • GRD sb, I am happy to hear that punishing non-Muslims for blasphemy is not supported by the imams. I must however find fault with the ...
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  • FYI, dear NAI readers, I have reproduced these important Arabic quotes in English translation now: Blasphemy in Hanafi Islamic Jurisprudence ....
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  • The verse is from the Quran, and the same for all. It is not different for you and me. It is as follows:....
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  • It is GM sb who is trying to throw dust in everyone's eyes and pretend that he did not say what he said. This is ...
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  • We are not discussing the laws in India or the US. We are discussing the law in the Quran and your argument is about Hudud ...
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  • GM sb lies. Here are the verses I am listing once again that make clear the meaning of "Light of Allah". The Quran, revelations, inspiration ...
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  • GGS says in the article: “ Hadith scholars and jurists have always held the view that any Hadith contradicting....
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  • Naseer sb. is trying to throw dust in our eyes quoting from Western authors on uses of sexuality in the.....
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  • Naseer sb. says, "Are you now saying that you are unaware that adultery is a punishable crime in Islam besides....
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  • Naseer sb. just offers further proof of his rudeness and boorishmess! And he does not quote....
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  • "One of the common dilemmas Muslim judges within Islamic nations face is being.....
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  • “The gnosis and knowledge of men is, compared with the Prophet’s, like the drop of moisture which oozes out of ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • Islamabad is only WORRIED about Hafiz Saeed and its enmity against India for which it will never hold its voice against China.'
    ( By Kaniz Fatma )
  • “...Islam has a special problem with apostasy”! No Sir, real Islam has No problem with apostasy .....
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  • Masha Allah!'
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • Some excerpts from the Last Sermon of the beloved Prophet [peace and blessings of Allah be upon him] delivered on the Ninth Day of Dhul ...
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  • Your Favourite Author's Page

      

    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    A regular NewAgeIslam.com columnist, Arshad Alam is a Delhi-based academic, political commentator and writer.


    Please read below the articles written by him for NewAgeIslam.com

     
    Islamic Society

    Rahaf Mohammed’s Case Brings the Issue of Apostasy in Islam to Spotlight

    However, we need to be wary of the long arm of the Saudi state. The state has been known to kidnap its ‘problematic’ citizens residing in other countries and bring them back to Saudi Arabia. Worse still, there have been reports that its hit squads have targeted dissidents even on foreign territory....

    Islam and Politics

    Muslims Must Avoid Namaaz in Public Spaces but Such Laws should be equally Applicable to All Communities

    There is no disagreement about the fact that other religious communities also do the same things: of course they do. Therefore there is a need to debate this practice within different religious communities. Likewise, it is up to Muslims themselves to have an internal debate over the issue and chalk out a strategy which puts an end to this problem once and for all....

    Current Affairs
    You will be Missed Mushirul Hasan Sb.
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    You will be Missed Mushirul Hasan Sb.

    Muslims, non-Muslims and atheists, all participated in his funeral prayer, something which is a rarity in these troubled times. Throughout his life, Mushirul Hasan Sb. laboriously wrote about the composite religious heritage of this country. In his death, he was perhaps giving us the same message....

    Islam and Politics

    Bulandshahr Reminds us that Mob Violence Scars Everyone
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The Muslim became the perpetual and potential other, always suspected of being beef eaters and therefore potential outsiders. Nothing much has changed between then and now: cow has been made as the symbol of creating difference between Hindus and Muslims. Cow has become the weapon to target Muslims. No one asks any question from those involved in lynching; rather the onus is on the Muslim to prove that they do not eat beef.....

    Islamic Society

    Why Does a Play Rile Islamists in Kerala?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The play is about women’s right, dignity and gender justice. It is also certainly humanist in the sense that the father eventually relents and redeems his own humanity. Also, the play would have lent itself to the current Muslim women’s movement in Kerala which is demanding entry of women in mosques. But then, all good things must come to an end. And in Muslim context, many a times it ends before it even starts....

    Also Read:

    Gender Equality in Islam

    Is A Woman’s Testimony Worth Half That of A Man?

    The War Within Islam

    How the Brutal Murder of Jamal Khashoggi Exposes the Naked Interest of Many
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The criminal act of the Saudi state should have led to a larger debate about the absence of an atmosphere of liberal critique in much of the Arab and Muslim world. But then the tragedy is that most Muslim leaders themselves are so knee deep in this malice that they can only use the incident to earn some political points for themselves....

    Current Affairs

    Why the Left Needs to Be Called out for Its Role in Najeeb’s Disappearance
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    But then Najeeb became the precursor of what was to come later: the system of instant justice; where mobs lynch Muslims merely on the basis of suspicion, without any regret or remorse. In most cases, the police are more than willing to dilute cases against the accused and are reluctant to bring the culprits to book. Something similar happened in Najeeb’s case. The only time they started having some semblance of seriousness was when the courts told them to double their efforts to find the missing student. Random searches were made here and there just for appearance sake....

    Islamic Ideology

    Aasia Bibi: Why Pakistan Needs to Confront Its Ideological Origins
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The roots of intolerance towards other religious traditions go very deep in its history and we must start at the time when this ‘nation of the pure’ was supposedly constructed as the new Medina. It was Jinnah and Muslim League’s articulation that they could no longer live with the Hindus which started a seemingly new narrative for the Muslims of the subcontinent. Jinnah’s obstinacy flew in the face of history: India being one of the few places where religious pluralism was a fact of everyday life rather than just a mere academic construct. In making Islam as an exclusivist religion, Jinnah wrenched the Muslims of this country of centuries pluralism and coexistence....

    Islam and Politics

    Ayodhya Can’t Be Solved By the Judiciary; Muslims Must Take the First Step to Resolve It
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    This would only mean one thing: that Namaz is the name of the process and any place at which Namaz is offered temporarily becomes a mosque. Mosque is not essential but Namaz certainly is. However, this logic certainly applies for all religious traditions: that what is essential to a religious tradition is the ritual of prayer and not the place where it is offered. However, in singling out Islam for this special treatment, the Supreme Court has certainly not applied its own principle equally to all religious traditions. Some might say that the Court in this case was operating with pre-conceived notions....

    Islam and Sectarianism

    Naya Pakistan or the Same Old Bigoted Pakistan?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    Today, it is an Ahmadi; tomorrow it could a Shia. Yet another day it can be the Sufis. There is a problem at the ideological foundation of Pakistan itself. The country will continue to create enemies out of its own people, till the time it actively confronts its past. Pakistan today needs to dialogue with the ghosts of Jinnah and Iqbal and perhaps tell them unequivocally that they were wrong in ways in which they conceptualised Islam as the ideological bedrock of the state of Pakistan....

    The War Within Islam

    Why Imran Khan’s Invocation of Medina is Deeply Regressive
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The prime minister of Pakistan has to believe in the ‘unity and oneness of Allah, the books of Allah, the Quran being the last of them, the Prophethood of Muhammad as the last of the Prophets and that there can be no Prophet after him, the Day of Judgment, and all the requirements and teachings of the Holy Quran and Sunnah’. Now if this is the oath that the prime minister takes, then it is understandable why Medina would continue to appeal. After all, the first experiment to establish Islam took place in Medina and the first country which got created specifically in the name of Islam was Pakistan....

    Islamic Ideology
    What Are We Commemorating on Baqr Eid?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    What Are We Commemorating on Baqr Eid?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    More importantly perhaps, the Muslim story about Bakr Eid is a continuation of the earlier Jewish and Christian covenant with God where blood plays a very significant role. Within the Semitic tradition, it is only through blood that redemption becomes possible. The Torah is filled with passages where blood becomes important to save oneself from God’s wrath and where animal sacrifice was an important aspect of pleasing the God. And certainly, the same God would sacrifice his own son called Jesus to ‘save the humanity’. It is through the blood of Christ that humanity had to be redeemed.....

    Related Articles:

    Don’t Let Baqr Eid Qurbani Descend Into Blood Orgy

    Hajj -- Some Afterthoughts

    Contribution of Islamic Media in Educating the Public on Animal Rights

    Animal Sacrifice vs. Compassionate Eid: An Open Letter To Our Muslim Brothers and Sisters

    Eid-ul-Adha at Bhopal 2014: A Reflection

    Islamic Society

    Where is the Muslim Rage on Chinese Internment of Muslims and Saudi Killing of Innocent Children in Yemen?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    So under the pretext of fighting Iranian militias, the Saudis have not just armed the opposition but have actual military presence in that country. Its air force is free to bomb the country at will and yet there is no international outcry. More recently, the Saudis bombed a school bus carrying children which led to scores being dead. Any civilised nation would have expressed remorse for this wanton killing of children or at least constituted an inquiry committee to look into such allegations. Not the Saudis. Not only did they not express remorse, they in fact justified the killings saying that these children were enemy combatants. Compare this with the statement of Taliban militants who killed children at school in Pakistan and one finds that there is no difference between the two. And yet, we are being increasingly led to believe that Saudis want to be in the forefront of fighting terror and extremism....

    Muslims and Islamophobia
    The Bogey of Islamophobia
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The Bogey of Islamophobia
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    From Saudi Arabia to Bangladesh, reformist Muslim voices have been jailed or simply eliminated. Essentially reformism seeks to challenge the stranglehold of the conservatives or radical Islamists over the community and therefore critique is nothing but fundamentally a political struggle. The bogey of Islamophobia comes handy for the orthodoxy to silence its critics, both externally but more so internally. It is time perhaps that the liberal left does rethinking about this whole issue of Islamophobia. In their defence of orthodox Islam, they are abandoning the progressives within the community and in the process ending up upholding some of the most pernicious manifestations of this religion....  

    Islamic Society
    The Myth of Jahiliyyah
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The Myth of Jahiliyyah
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    And just as Enlightenment delivered Europe into modernity through the dark ages, Islam delivered geography and its people through darkness into a new dawn. In its modern reading according to Syed Qutb and Maududi, large parts of the world are still in the age of Jahiliyyah and are waiting for Islam to deliver them from their self-imposed darkness. Just as the Europeans convinced us that colonialism was good for us, Islamists are out to prove that Islam will be good for the entire world. The claim rests on the assertion that Islam brought humanity to the Arabs and one measure of that humanity was its treatment of women....

    Islam and Politics

    The Unprecedented Loneliness of Indian Muslims
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    Muslims are in an unprecedented situation today. There is so much Muslim talk these days but then there is no Muslim voice. Muslims are either spoken about or spoken over. The only Muslims who get a chance to speak are the sponsored ones: made for TV mullahs. They speak on an agenda which is pre-configured to otherwise and demonise Muslims. If this cacophony of silence needs to be broken, it must be done by Muslims themselves. There is no need to wait for others to speak up. True this loneliness is killing, but silence around the issue will only allow this loneliness to rip apart our very souls....  

    Radical Islamism and Jihad

    Why Should an Academic Course on Islamist Terror Rile Muslims?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    We need to differentiate between Islamic and Islamist: the latter only attests the political use of Islam to capture state power where violence is indeed one of the many options. Isn’t this the ultimate aim of Islamists the world over and isn’t it that they have used terror as a method to achieve that end? How do we understand the Taliban and more recently the ISIS except through the lens of Islamist terror? Worldwide, even amongst Muslim scholars, there is now a consensus that it is the ideology of Islamism which needs to be resisted....

    Islamic Society

    Darul Qazas or Sharia Courts: Why both must be Opposed?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    It must be underlined though that equating this with something like a Sharia court is clearly a misnomer. Courts have the ‘power’ to adjudicate over issues; the Darul-Qaza will have no such power and as such will be more like arbitration councils. To be fair to the AIMPLB, such quasi-judicial bodies do exist in other communities, such as the Khap Panchayats in Western Uttar Pradesh and Haryana. In some tribal areas, these bodies even have legal recognition. Thus, the establishment of Darul Qaza may well within be the ambit of law. Demanding for a ban on Darul Qazas while remaining silent on Khaps is clearly hypocritical. It should also be understood that Darul Qazas have been functioning in this country since at least 1972....

    Islam and Politics

    The Jinnah Redux in AMU; This Time as a Farce
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    Muslim society is increasingly convinced that it needs to police the behaviour of its members. Certainly one cannot hope for freedom and democracy within the wider society without championing these values within one’s own community. What is more worrisome is the Muslim anxiety to define itself solely as a theological community. If theology starts marking the boundaries of behaviour, the language of rights becomes the first casualty and the communities only stultify further.  There are enough problems which AMU should worry about. A few students drinking beer and showing it off during Ramzan should be the least of its worries....

    Current Affairs

    Understanding Pranab Mukherjee’s Speech as an Answer to Mohan Bhagwat is Wrong
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The speeches of Bhagwat and Mukherjee go a long way to show that there is a consensus on the question of nationalism between these two political formations. The difference is just about shades rather than of type. Thus the TV debates and the newspaper columns which seek to point out their essential difference is definitely out of proportion and a lazy reading of their viewpoints. More fundamentally, this laziness is also because of the assumptions of the liberal Hindu historiography itself. Is it simply a matter of coincidence that the RSS can switch between an Indira Gandhi and Modi with such ease? After all, Indira was hailed as the Durga by none other than the RSS and the congress had no objection at that time....

    Islamic Personalities

    Why Shah Waliullah’s Thesis should be Repudiated by Indian Muslims
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    The Muslim must become puritan in order to relive the supposed lost glory of Islam. For this, purging itself of all accretions and all traces of syncretism was to become the sine qua non of Indian Muslims. As a political project, this tradition continues to this day through the activities of Deobandis, the Ahle Hadees and even the Barelwis. More than anything else, Shah Waliullah’s writings seem to be a fatal recipe for the political future of Muslims in India. ...

    Islam and Politics

    Can the Proposed World Council of Muslim Minorities correct the stereotypical image of Islam?
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    Then there are Muslim minority contexts which are in the form of historically established communities who have been living together with other communities for centuries. India is an obvious example. Yet, over the years, owing to a number of factors, there has been a growing alienation of the Muslim minority communities. Some reasons for this are internal: there is increasing reliance on particular readings of religious texts which is weaning Muslims away from their shared cultural contexts. But the problem is also from the outside: increasing Islamophobia has meant that Muslims have come to be considered as untrustworthy and their religion as the epitome of backwardness....

    Islam and Politics
    His Name is Khan and He is a Hero
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    His Name is Khan and He is a Hero
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    That unending night of the tragedy, Dr. Kafeel had earned goodwill and praise from all media outlets for his sympathy and action to save dying children. But then, his identity did not fit the discourse of right-wingers. How could a Muslim become a hero? After all, this was a government which had come to power on an anti-Muslim plank and to their horror of horrors; here was a Muslim who amidst the murderous apathy of the government was winning applause from different quarters. The trolls got active....

    Islam, Women and Feminism

    Asifa was Brutalised Because She Was a Muslim; Period
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    Asifa’s brutalised body was not the first, nor will it be the last witness to the madness of Uber nationalism. Many years ago, there was Surat and many years before that, there was Kunan Poshpora. The victims, some dead and some alive, are still waiting for justice. Only time will tell whether our sense of outrage and morality will stop at Asifa or whether she will become the moment of critical introspection about our collective certainties....

    Related Article:

    The Kathua Rape-And-Murder Case: Why See It Through The Prism Of Religion?

    Islam and Politics

    How China and the Call to Caliphate Are Re-Writing the Script in Kashmir
    Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

    What we are witnessing now is perhaps more troubling: there is no conception of the nation-state in this new breed of militancy. All struggles are for establishing the glory of Islam. Pakistan is no longer the ideal: rather the idea is to establish the rule of true Islam in Pakistan also. It is no wonder then that for this new crop of Islamic militants, leaders of the Hurriyat are seen as posing obstacles to the path of establishing Islamic caliphate. Zakir Musa’s open threat to behead those who talk in terms of nation state was only a pointer of things to come....

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    TOP ARTICLE

    Radical Islamism and Jihad
    Defeating Islamism and Jihadism: Evolve a New Theology of Peace, Pluralism and Gender justice, Sultan Shahin asks Muslim States at UNHRC in Geneva
    Sultan Shahin, Founding Editor, New Age Islam

    A War on Terror has been raging for 17 years now but we are no closer to defeating Islamist terror. Jihadism continues to attract Muslim youth. This is because the world has not paid enough attention to the ideology of Islamism and Jihadism.

    Mainstream Muslims have considered Islam a spiritual path to salvation, one of the many. Islam aims at reforming society for a peaceful, harmonious, pluralist existence. However, due to certain historical factors, the theology and jurisprudence of Islam that evolved in the 8th and 9th centuries (CE), present Islam as a political, totalitarian ideology of supremacism, xenophobia, intolerance and gender discrimination. It is this theology of violence, exclusivism and world-domination that is taught in madrasas and sustains Islamism. But despite the Islamist violence against peaceful Muslims and non-Muslims alike, the community is still not focussed on the need for evolving a counternarrative of Islam.

     It is imperative that Muslim countries that have signed the UN Charter look into the issue urgently and work towards developing a new theology of peace, pluralism and gender justice. While several countries like Morocco and now Saudi Arabia appear to be moving in this direction, the one country that has made a solid contribution is Turkey. In a decade-long exercise 100 Turkish scholars have managed to limit the number of authentic ahadith to just 1600, out of over 10,000, and provide each hadith with context and suitable interpretation. This book of authentic Hadith has been provided to all mosques in Turkey but I hope it is made available to the global Muslim community in their own languages as soon as possible.

    Allama Iqbal, a poet-philosopher of the South Asian sub-continent had called for the reconstruction of religious thought in Islam almost a hundred years ago. Let us at least start working on it now....

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