I fully agree with you that “only when
we move out of this meaningless debate and throw off the chains of theological
slavery that people can become truly human.”
Among the earliest poetic lines I
remember of is: “yehi hai ibadat yehi din o iman = ki kaam aa-ay duniyan may
insaan ke insaan.”
Incidentally I have authored an
exegetic work, MS approved in 2002 and publish in the States mid 2009. It’s
Chapter 7.1 has the title: ‘Service to humanity as the essence of din
al-Islam:” incorporates the following statement: “din al-Islam may be connoted with a faith system that calls for
orienting oneself (asslama) to God for the doing of good deeds, or
serving humanity. Accordingly the Qur’an describes ‘din al-Islam’, as
the universal faith that was enjoined on earlier prophets, who were all true muslims (2:131-133),3
and conveyed the same essential message. ........ Muslims ardently believe in
the ‘five pillars’ and are very particular to comply with them, but they are by
and large not pro-active in serving humanity as required by their faith.
The Universal religion -essay authored by Swami Vivekananda is worth publishing in New age islam.
‘No Religion’ A Buddhist Monk’s Approach to Universal Religious Harmony
By Yoginder Sikand, New Age Islam.
My response in few words: It touched my heart and acted as balm.
Thank you sir for your generosity towards me.
1. "In the
early centuries of Islam, the Muslims sourced knowledge from all over the
world. Scholars from distant lands gravitated to Baghdad, which thus became the
knowledge capital of the world. This enabled Islam to make phenomenal
advancement in diverse fields of knowledge. The Abbasid Caliphs, notably al-Ma'mun (813-833) established the House of Wisdom
(bait al hikmah) that was equipped with observatories and became an unrivalled
centre of learning for the era. It undertook a massive translation exercise
lasting many decades and translated into Arabic, the ancient Greek and Hellenic
works such as those of Pythagoras, Plato, Aristotle, Hippocrates,
Plotinus, Galen, and others, which were later retranslated from Arabic into
European languages. It also pooled the best brains from the farthest regions of
Islamic world that spanned from the recesses of China to Spain - regardless of
their religion, and harnessed their collective talents and made phenomenal
advancement in diverse fields of knowledge - notably, mathematics, astronomy, medicine, alchemyHYPERLINK
chemistry, botany, zoology, geography
and cartography. The knowledge thus accumulated served as the springboard
for Renaissance – an uncontested historical reality that hardly needs any
.aspx?ArticleID=6022"Darwinism is Consistent with Qur’anic
Insights on Man’s Origin
Muslims’ ignorance /disregard of the Qur’anic guidance and its Colossal and
Wajihuddin and Sarkar Haider Saheban, It would be wonderful if both of you
could spare some time to engage with our readers.
are engaged in seminal debates on issues of vital concern to Muslims. It is for
the first time that this is happening on any Islamic website.
Dr Haider recalls, this site has been engaged in these debates from the
beginning. At the time he is reminded of we were debating if Niaz Fatehpuri’s rational
views should be allowed to stay on the site. Some readers wanted the chapter on
his works and ideas from a book deleted. This was not allowed and they were
very unhappy. But the site has always stood for free debate for all concerned
people within limits of decent language and there was nothing editors of the
site could have done.
I find some people again exasperated with some
ideas and responding with anger. I hope all keep their cool as the issues we
are debating are of vital importance for the health of the community. our well-being
in the present as much as our future depend on this, as I tried to explain in
issues are also not new. The entire Ilm Ul Kalam is full of
controversies of this nature and the community has debated and transcended many
of these questions over the centuries of debates.
difference now is that with the spread of internet most relevant Islamic
literature is easily available to people who would have never read them in
those days. So these debates have now become wider and are engaging a larger
number of people. It is time we visited ilm-ul-kalam again and updated
it and spread the knowledge therein.
is no lime for recriminations or questioning peoples’ motives or starting
pointing out the shortcomings of other religions’ sacred literature. I know I am
repeating myself but I feel this is important enough to be said repeatedly.
should look for our resources and expand their limits. And above all , change
our own attitudes where required.
trend is towards growing rigidity as well as growing rationalism. The space for
moderates is shrinking. We must choose our path carefully. Above all, the purpose
of debate and brainstorming on the site is to share and learn and grow and change.
If we are not prepared to learn and grow and change, we are wasting our and
other people’s time.
Respected muhammad yunus (1) saheb.
have killed many question by shooting an arrow "I am not a historian"
No one can question your choice.
I have to check how it is different from others.
2. This is my favourite Rubaai. I like poetry of all Urdu poets. It does not
mean I agree with them. Qurane kareem does not favour poetry. Correct mr if I
We read some sahabis (RA) were under boycott when they made excuse of scorching
heat. What you write about Mohammed sahib (PBUH) is true. He was indeed as you
mentioned, but one can see difference in Medina. Now don't force your opinion.
I expressed mine.
4. What I said, said. You have made your point. Again you killed many
questions. I must admit you are a smart guy. Though majority of Muslims believe
in every hadith. This means number of Muslims going to Jannat is reduced if you
believe they have insulted the prophet.
You are angry with me because I quoted insulting Ahadith. As a Muslim your
anger is justified. I have an impression that you took side of those writers
saying those writers should be seen in the light of their understanding in
under those conditions.
I say everybody can be excused on this ground. If insulting is a crime, they
I may be weak or below standard in any field.
7. I am not the source of insulting material.
8. Thank you for your deep concern. I feel fear even if I don't write anything.
Our society is damghotu society. I have written on this site. I am the
result of your damghotu society. Now you will excuse the society by
saying that everyone is responsible for his action. Salman Rushdie may have
earned money by his book. Neither I take bribe nor do I have luxury car, home
etc. I am a simple lower middle class person. I have enough money for a lower
middle class in Indian society.
Fear has been instrumental in shaping the life of a Muslim. Fear of Allah, fear
of Adhabe qabr, fear of Qayamat, fear of judgment day, fear of pul
sirat, fear of jahannam. It is the main tool of Allah. Still
majority of Muslims live a life of hypocrite. Psychologists may tell what the
result of excessive fear may be.
My understanding of Universal laws may be low, but it applies to majority of
Muslims. Who are the headache of the whole world? Muslims or others?
You have warned me of potential danger. Thank you very much. My hypocrisy will
How I want to live my life (not a criminal one), is not possible in Muslim
9. I have visited Gurudwaras and I don't compel you to believe. I am
antithesis of you. You feel ashamed. My friends have no complaint because I
have not held their icon of faith in derision, because they offer freedom of
faith. In fact Non-Muslims truly follow Lakum Deenukum Waliyadeen, not
In one sentence Muslim society is a suppressive society. Every possible benign
entertainment is haram.
I will wait for the moment when Muslims will be able to throw insulting
Allah's score of guiding the people in the whole history is terribly low.
10. Time will tell how Muslims will respond to your call.
Best I can do to is I wish you the best.
You need not open a new chapter for me. I don't boast I am a very moral man. I
will improve myself without any fear of God, without greed of jannat and
fear of jahannam. Perhaps I will join some charitable trust to serve the
humanity instead of serving Allah.
I want to live with my disbelief. Who knows what is in the womb of future?
I realized I am ruining your time and mine as well. I have many interesting
fields like Homeopathy, Photography and poetry etc.
I am leaving some questions behind me to ponder upon. It is a gift if you can
accept or throw into dustbin.
Questions will be asked again and again.
In 1400 years what Muslims have given to world is a question to be asked.
Before saying good bye, thanks to Sultan sahib, you, sadaf saheb, Rehan Nezami
saheb, Ghulam Saheb, Aiman Reyaz saheb, satwa saheb, jb saheb, manni, and all
others I am not mentioning.
I pardon all of you without any demand if you all intentionally or
unintentionally have said something bad.
It is up to you what do you want to do.
Sorry Sadaf I am not keeping my word. Think you saw a bad dream.
I am really feeling fear.
Chalo jashn manayen ki mausame khizaan chala gaya.
Jo dushman tha iman ka wo kafir chala gaya.
Ab hogi hamari jannat, hamari Huren aur ham
Pilao saqi bhar bha ke jaam-e-tasneem waiz nadan chala gaya.
Mubarak tumhen zahido husn-wa-sharabe jannat
jo karta tha sajde bina kisi tama ke, woh beloth insaan chalaa gaya.
With heavy heart and tears good bye to all.
Dear Mohd Yunus. I
am now delighted that you finally refer to our Prophet with the respect he deserves.
I will not be able to answer your long list of questions one by one, but will
like to deal with them in a collective way. My comments
Answer to your questions (in red):
book on Islamic History you approve (perhaps a censored one)? Sorry! I am not a historian
sirah book you approve? By Muhammad Hussain Haykal /
translation of the noble Quran do you approve? Muhammad
The verses 33:21 of the Qur’an commands us to emulate
the Prophet’s uswatun hasana. Your next question will be how to go about it.
There are three ways:
i. Just reflect on the third line of this Shaikh Saadi
(reh)’s famous rubayee:
be-kamaal-e-hi, ii) Kashafad-duja be-jamaal-e-hi, iii) Hasunat jamee'u
khisaal-e-hi, iv) Sallu 'alae-hi wa aal-e-hi .
you don’t know the meaning, imagine in your mind that your Prophet is the
paragon of goodness and go about your life accordingly.
ii. Read the Qur’an back to back, spot all the noble
things it exhorts and attribute them to the Prophet. The Qur’an also offers
glimpses of his noble persona that my joint publication captures as follows:
(the superscripted numbers refer to Qur’anic verses)
The Prophet was mild to his men even after their lapses in Uhud
expedition.96 He readily
excused others from taking part in (Tabuk) expedition.189 He offered food to uninvited guests, and cordially
entertained them, even if they caused him annoyance, by staying on after the
meal for socializing (33:53). The Prophet also displayed the most
pristine form of generosity by praying for the forgiveness of his enemies.190 Accordingly, the Qur’an
describes him as a noble messenger,191
endowed with a sublime character,192
faithful to his trust,193
and (a manifestation of God’s) mercy to believers,194 and to all humanity.195
On a personal level, the Prophet was a mortal like others.196 He had no power to avert harm from himself, or to
benefit himself, or to harm or guide others.197 Like most of fellow Meccans, he was unlettered,198 and could not read a
book - for had it been so, the prattlers would have been skeptical.199
He was a messenger of God and his only mission was to convey (God’s message)200 with clarity;201 that he may deliver
humanity out of darkness into Light.202
The Prophet personified the noble paradigms of the Qur’an as tabled in my
following article that you did not even bother to comment.
Behavioral Paradigms of the Qur’an
iv. To have your parents lay
supreme emphasis on conduct behaviour, goodness, excellence and all moral
values that are universal. My late father who incidentally never pressed me for
Islamic rituals had tacitly made it clear that any wilful foul step – I am
thrown out of the house. Any exam result short of first rank in the school, I got
a thorough beating if he thought it was due to my negligence in studies (only
happened once – my first half yearly exam in Class II, back in 1951).
I take your point that shaitans are born in the
homes of farishtas. The responsibility of your faith lies on you and you alone.
As the Qur’an puts it: “O You who
believe, on you rests (the responsibility) of your souls....” (5:105).
Thanks for correcting me.
You say : “Again I humbly request you to abstain
from such accusations.” I only accuse you when you quote ‘daif’ accounts (that are
untenable, reprehensible, odious, shameful, legendary, and even preposterous) to
demonise the Prophet and indulge in seductive talks against his wives. To
convince you of the rational of my advice, I asked to put yourself in the shoes
of a brother of Karina (an arbitrary name) and to reflect how you will be
angered if she is falsely implicated in a sexual episode and the story is sprung
upon you. I have tried to explain to you repeatedly that quoting someone’s malicious
remarks is a calumny – a criminal offence. Very unfortunately your concept of universal
principles of law seems to be extremely poor and so you are consistently refusing
to understand that quoting others’ (your enemy’s) remarks to malign others (Karina,
your sister) is a criminal act called calumny. That is why the Qur’an declares:
“You who believe, if a wicked person comes to you with a (slanderous) news,
verify it, otherwise you may ignorantly harm (other) people, and become
regretful for what you have done” (49:6).
You also had the audacity to say that the Qur’an
has lustful accounts. You beat all the Meccan enemies of Islam in demonizing
Islam. They called Muhammad an
impostor, a madman, and an insane poet,6 and ridiculed the Qur’anic revelation.7 They also found the revelation strange and
a jumble of dreams9 and condemned it as the legends of the ancients.10
They questioned why Muhammad could not show any miracles,13
and why a man of importance from the two
cities was not chosen for the revelation.14 They accused
the Prophet of forging lies and witchcraft,16 forging lies against God,
forgery and making up tales,17
witchcraft,18 obvious witchcraft that
and of being bewitched or possessed
by a Jinn.20 But
they never questioned his sexual fidelity, nor charged the Qur’an even with an
iota of sexual perversion – and here comes snake of a man, my namesake – deaf, dumb and blind of intellect who can
only sting, charges the Noble Qur’an of containing lustful accounts. [your
comments appearing under a cluster of reports under the caption, “Iranian Lawmakers
Seek to Lower Age of Marriage for Girls From 13 to 9” dated august 30, 2012.]
you when you showered on me far greater respect than on my Prophet, but this is
a thing of the past as you have admitted your mistake and I will not accuse you
for this anymore.
Your concluding statement: “Burn your Ahadith,
Sirah and history books if you feel ashamed.” When did I feel ashamed. Unfortunately
your scholarship is limited to only Islamic theological discourses. Dig into
parallel discourses of other faiths. You have no dearth of accounts that fall
in the category of daif as defined above. But the scholars of those religions
are looking forward and not anchoring themselves almost eternally to the ‘daif’
stuff of their theological discourses. They have other priorities in life. They
have just glossed over the medieval era of their religious thoughts. We (ulama and
intelligentsia at large) are sticking to the medieval era. Now you will say,
how can we gloss over the medieval era. I have made clear recommendations in my
book (joint publication) as well as several articles. Kindly read my related
articles and raise objective question if you have any If were to charge you at
a meagre US $50 per hour for writing these personal enlightening comments, you
already owe me at least US $500/- You raise questions in rapid succession and
bring calumnies against our Prophet and his wives and force me to defend them
as much as you will defend your daughter, sister or wife, if she is made the
heroin of a fabricated gossip. The following remark from my duly approved and
authenticated book, does emphatically advocate to treat “all reports in this (daif)
segment of the Prophet’ biography parables and embellishments - to be fair to
the early biographers, rather than historical facts.
You have now forced me to open a separate folder
on you because i fear you – another Saman Rushdi in the making – though God
alone knows the rightly guided. If your intentions is to become popular among
the enemies of Islam by wilfully demonizing the Prophet, telling stories about
his life and lies about the Qur’an your case rests with God. But if you do are
a Muslim and live in a Muslim locality, you risk to pay dearly for your unmitigated
condemnation of the icons of faith.
I as a Muslim have stood before idols in mandirs
while accompanying some of my late dad’s Hindu customers and never for a moment
held them or their icons of faith in derision. But I find you my antithesis bearing
If you are writing all these things out of
frustration, you henceforth must declare upfront as you have done only in your
last but one comment: “I demand to remove all shameful accounts from secondary
source of Islam.” Remember what is written is informed by the literary style
and mindset of the era and is past history that no one can deconstruct. The ulama
cling to them literally as it serves their interest. Hence my (joint)
publication calls for treating them as whole in their historical perspective except
the part that preserves the noble heritage of the Prophet his companions and
details on Islamic rituals. The key recommendations of the book are:
Therefore, as suggested by some of the eminent
Muslim scholars, Muslims must endeavor to take guidance directly from the
Qur’an.9 The best way to accomplish this, as the Qur’an
advocates, is to probe into it,10 and seek the best meaning,11
as attempted in this work.
Furthermore, Muslims must endeavor to cultivate
an exemplary moral conduct and behavior (uswatun hasana) to do full
justice to the heritage of their Prophet (33:21/Ch. 15), and to excel in
all good things (that includes lawful pursuits) as enjoined by the Qur’an (2:148/Ch.
16; 5:48/Ch. 9.4).
There is also a pressing need to substitute the
predominantly theological content of the curriculum of traditional religious
schools (madrassas) with a focused study of the Qur’an and a comprehensive
study of the ever expanding fields of universal sciences and diverse faculties
of knowledge that are nothing but the manifestations of the Words (kalimat)
of God (18:109, 31:27/Ch. 2.1), that cannot be divided between Islamic and
non-Islamic domains (Concluding paragraph, Ch. 10.2).
As for the theological discourses, notably the
Hadith literature, Muslims must not accept them blindly, and cite them freely, without
knowing their background and the classification.12 The Hadith remains a critical part of Islamic
religion, in so much as it preserves the legacy of the Prophet, no less his
companions. However, since this is a very technical field, it should be
reserved for enlightened specialists who have attained sufficient maturity,
knowledge, and training to distinguish between weak and reliable Hadith, and
not to confuse them with the Word of God.
Last but not least, there is an over-riding need
for the Muslim intelligentsia to protest the demonization of their Holy book by
some of their own theologians and jurists, who, in the name of implementing the
Qur’anic ordinances, justify blatantly anti-Qur’anic heinous crimes,
particularly against womenfolk, as typified by examples that hit the world
media in recent years and can be readily accessed on the Internet.13
Naseer Sb. says, "The solution lies in every Muslim reading the Quran for true guidance."
The true guidance of the Quran consists of admonitions to be egalitarian, peaceful, righteous, just, law-abiding, compassionate, tolerant and seekers of knowledge.
Laws, rules, protocols and punishments are time-bound and must be consonant with contemporary ethos and values. The punishments prescribed in the Quran are a great advance over punishments prescribed in the Old Testament 1400 years earlier. Now another 1400 years have passed by but we continue to resist the ijtihad that should have occurred long ago.
Fundamentalists and the Literalists
Christian/Jewish Fundamentalism and Literalism is not the same as Islamic Fundamentalism and Literalism. This distinction must be remembered. The Bible prescribes the following punishments
1. Stoning to death for adultery Deuteronomy 22:21
2. Stoning to death for apostasy Deuteronomy 13:10
3. Stoning to death for homosexuals Leviticus 20:13
4. Death for blasphemy Leviticus 24:10-16
5. Unprovoked killing of all non-believers 2 Chronicles 15:13
In Contrast the Quran prescribes:
1. A hundred stripes for adultery with stringent rule for establishing the crime that requires four eye witnesses. False accusers are punished with eighty stripes. If the evidence falls short of four witnesses and if there are only three witnesses, these three are awarded the punishment of eighty stripes.
2. No punishment for apostasy alone
3. No punishment for blasphemy alone
4. No punishment for homosexuals
5. No unprovoked killing of anyone. No transgression of limits even when fighting those who fight you.
A Muslim who uses the label of fundamentalist or a literalist to describe the ‘Muslim’ extremists is unwittingly saying that the Quran is equally flawed and cannot be followed literally. All legal and prescriptive verses are meant to be understood and followed literally.
‘Pillars of Islam’
Three of the five `pillars’ of Islam are in verse 2:177 itself and are part of Taqwa. Verse 2:3 also speak of the same three `pillars’ viz, belief, prayer and zakat besides belief in the revelations and belief in the hereafter and these are described as those on true guidance and those who will find guidance in the Book. There are 112 verses in the Quran regarding the need to be steadfast in prayer and an equal number for zakat and many more for belief in God.
In the early days of Islam everyone earned their living through a vocation or business. No one `lived off’ his religion. Today most imams rely on their income as imams for a living. For them it is a job and for many of them, it is nothing more. Belief evaporates the moment the motives become impure. While I would agree that for this category of people, prayer may do no good, for the common man, if he prays five times a day, for no other reason except for the love of God, is a better person than one who does not. I admit that there are many exceptions where a person shows greater Taqwa but does not pray, but invariably, such exceptional people are those who do not run down those who do pray or belittle the practice.
While I do agree that most Muslims stop at these five pillars and do not read the Quran and go beyond and inculcate the moral values and standards of behaviour expected of every Muslim, is that not true of even those who do not observe the 'pillars'?
The solution lies in every Muslim reading the Quran for true guidance. Reading of a simple, unadorned and literal translation is enough. The Mullah's can be put in their place only when the common Muslims equip themselves with the knowledge of the Quran.
The Quran is not a difficult book to understand and does not require commentary, text or the help of scholars notwithstanding the fact that there are many who speak about the need for all these. Show me a passage (not single isolated verses) that creates difficulty if taken literally if you disagree.
Salafi, Wahhabi, Tablighi, fundamentalist, literalist, Islamist etc. are not just labels, they are very useful shorthand to convey very valid concepts. Without them writing an article or even a comment would become a lengthy and tiresome chore. They are welcome to our discussions but in my interactions with some of the Wahabis and Tablighis, all they told me was that I was not a true Muslim and I was sure to go to Hell because I did not agree with their conviction that all other religions are fake.
It is a fallacy to allege that opposing them means we are trying to join the rest of the world against our own. Our opposition to coercion, violence, intolerance, dogmatism, suppression of women and using inhuman methods of punishing criminals comes from our own thinking and sensibility, and is not a ruse to win the approval of others. There are a lot of similarities in the outlooks of what we may call the right thinking Muslims, Hindus, Christians and others. That does not mean we have sold out to them.
The distinguishing feature of moderates is that we keep rationality, common sense, a conciliatory attitude, love for humanity and respect for the religions of others at the forefront. None of that is inconsistent with the Quran.
Mohd. Yunus. In your
last commentary, you address me as ‘Janab Muhammad Yunus Saheb’, and in the
body of your comment, you state “How do you know about Mohammed, By Quran How?”
Now why do you show
me far greater respect than my namesake Prophet of God dead for over14
centuries, regarded by me as well as nearly a billion and a half Muslims of the
world in utmost respect. At least call him Prophet Muhammad. At least refer to
the Qur’an as The Noble Qur’an or ‘the Qur’an’. Anyway these manners come from
family upbringing. They only reflect your early life grooming and family
heritage. But you can try to learn please. Be courteous even to your enemies,
let alone the man whom you regard as God’s Prophet - if you are indeed a Muslim.
But of course, if you are a non-Muslim Islam hater, planted on this website to spread
venom against its Prophet, which your unsympathetic Islam critical comments are
increasingly indicating – then that is a different matter.
Please post your
apology if you are indeed a Muslim.
mohd. yunus. You
never answer the question I raise. My question tabled allegorically as a
sequel to a long chain of comments was as follows:
"Say you have a younger sister Karina (arbitrary name), a chaste girl most
dear to you. John says falsely in the bar that he embedded her. Now if Luis
quotes John to tell you that Karina, who you think is as noble as angel had
illegal sexual relation with John, would you not be angered?
You have simply ducked this. Playing John, you are insisting to make public all
the calumnies that is uttered by Luis about and chaste and noble Karina. You
only convince me of the accuracy of my following seemingly unkind remark in my
joint publication in relation to the mindset of those who are overwhelmed by
the Hadith corpus:
“since the literary style, setting, paradigms, and dialectical
constructions of the Hadith literature date back to the early medieval era,
their continued teaching and propagation, such as in traditional religious
schools (madrassas), can adversely impact the mental development of the
students, shackling their power of reasoning and virtually freezing their
intellect into the early medieval era." [p. 342]:
I request you once again, to refrain from quoting utterly daif (untenable,
reprehensible, odious, shameful, legendary, and even preposterous) accounts to
demonise the Prophet who is held in utmost respect by all Muslims and do not
indulge in seductive talks against his wives, who to the Muslisms are like
their mothers. Put yourself in the shoes of Karina’s brother in the above
mentioned arbitrary example. Would you like Luis to quote John about his allegedly
sexual relation with Karina your chaste and noble sister. I would have used the
word ‘amorous’ rather than ‘sexual’ but this word may go above your head as
have my series of solicitation so far. So I had to be explicit.
I wholeheartedly second Sultan Shahin sahib's call to moderate Muslims to take heart, to come together and to strengthen our cause. We seem to be pulled by forces of fanaticism in one direction and apostasy in the other. Let us continue to pursue our middle course.
Objectionable teachings exist in the scriptures and apocrypha of all religions but other religions have been able to either shed or suppress them. We have lent an air of holiness to a lot of books that do not deserve it. The vast bulk of Islamic literature can be discarded. We should depend more on our independent thinking and our common sense than on the written word. We should depend more on intelligent interpretation than on literalism.
The more we use our innate sense of righteousness and justice the better Muslims we shall be. And let us shun extremism, dogmatism and fanaticism like the plague.
mohd yunus. If X
quotes Y's remarks purporting to implicate your mom or your dad in a shameful
affair (arbitrary example of course), would you not think X is trying to insult
you. For the Muslims the Prophet is no less respected than their fathers and
his wives are like their mothers. You (X in the above analogy)
deliberately and cunningly insult the sentiments of the devout Muslims by
quoting the enemies of Islam (Y).
Say you have a younger sister Karina (arbitrary name), a chaste girl most dear to
you. John says falsely in the bar that he embedded her. Now if Luis quotes John
to tell you that Karina, who you think is as noble as angel had illegal sexual
relation with John, would you not be angered? Do my words make any sense now?
I have written long explanatory
commentaries to you soliciting you not to quote secondary sources (Johns/Y's)
to maligning the Prophet and his wife (Karina in above example) but you insist
on doing this. Do you want me to be more crude?
Sultan Shahin Sb,
for the detailed response.
point that I was making was that we should desist from using labels as an
argument. Avoiding using the labels forces us to be specific about what we do
not like about say Naik or the Salafis or the Tablighis without demonizing them
totally. How can we communicate with these groups if we demonize them without
being specific about what we do not like?
fear of being blown up by terrorists is overdone. This is what Daniel Kahneman
an Israeli Psychologist and winner of Nobel Prize in economics has to say:
today’s world, terrorists are the most significant practitioners of the art of
inducing availability cascades. With a few horrible exceptions such as 9/11,
the number of casualties from terror attacks is very small relative to other
causes of death. Even in countries that have been targets of intensive terror
campaigns, such as Israel, the weekly number of casualties almost never came
close to the number of traffic deaths. The difference is in the availability of
the two risks, the ease and the frequency with which they come to mind.
Gruesome images, endlessly repeated in the media, cause everyone to be on edge.
As I know from experience, it is difficult to reason oneself into a state of
complete calm. Terrorism speaks directly to System 1.
further point to note is that while there are deaths due to traffic every week
of the year in Israel and elsewhere, terrorist incidents are only in a couple
of weeks of the year, and when these occur, the number of deaths in the
terrorist incident are less than the number of deaths due to accidents in the
same week.. Worldwide, the number of deaths due to terrorist acts in a year are
less than the number of deaths due to accidents in a single day and also less
than the number of deaths due to people falling off stairs or being gored by an
animal or due to medical malpractice and we are talking about all acts of
terrorism and not just from the Jehadis.
point that I would like to make to the Jehadis is precisely this - no government
is fooled into thinking that they represent a credible threat. Some governments
take advantage of the fear that terrorist acts generate to justify their wars
“on terror”. The Jehadis are therefore playing into the hands of their ‘enemy’
and are helping their cause while they think that they are doing good which
they are not in any case.
The article by Mr
Sultan Shahin Sb is a very useful contribution which will serve as the
foundation stone of the liberation of the Muslim world from the clutches of
irresponsible Muslim leaders and fake Islamic scholars who are busy in passing
baseless Fatawas contrary to Islamic teachings.
It will also help
fight against the hypocrites who have disguised themselves behind the veil of
Muslims, but, in actual practice, they are not the well-wishers of Muslims in
any sense except possessing a Muslim name for a particular purpose; they are
more dangerous than an open opposition. Such people are trying to damage the
religion at the vey root by spreading misconception among the masses. They openly
denounce or reject the existence of Allah, the Creator or His prophet (saw)
simply to provoke Muslims and infuriate them.
The five pillars are the pre-requisites of being a perfect Muslim before Allah,
how liberal we may be, but we should not forget and must believe that without
the fundamentals of Islam, a Muslim is just like a nominal Muslim who is happy
having a “Muslim name” and eating “Bade ka”.
I agree with Mr.
Naseer Ahmed Sb that fundamentals in every subject are of utmost
importance, and in absence of that we are unable to build the structure of our
knowledge to the greater heights. Such a person may be a great Islamic scholar
or worldly scholar in other sense, but as far as the case of being righteous is
concerned, we must start from the ABC of Islam then only we may take the
initiative to correct the flaws within Islam or rectify the wrong practices,
conception or understanding among the Muslims to create a better image of Islam
before the world.
I will like to make
the following comments, to be read closely, one by one – given the gravity of
the problem facing the community as the article ably demonstrates:
fundamental problem with all categories of Muslims - the subsets of orthodox
Islam, the advocates of the Classical Sharia law (Islamists), the in-house
demonizers of Islamic faith (my namesake for example) the ex-Muslims for
example is that they not only venerate the secondary Islamic sources (Hadith,
Classical Islamic Shari and Sira) but also privilege them over the Qur’an. If I
were as to speak in crude language, these are the sort of people who, in the
Qur’anic noble terminology seek the easiest path. What can be more satisfying
to a lustful and criminal minded Muslim than some of so called ‘daif’ accounts which
I have paraphrased as “accounts that sound most bizarre and purport to provoke
sexuality, induce terrorism, foment inter-faith hatred, and stand deeply
misogynist, scientifically untenable, self contradictory and Qur’an-incompatible.”
extensively researched article:
Defending the Hadith and its Compilers – the Great
Imams who are sometimes misunderstood and even reviled 
the compilers of these accounts your article purports to do is grossly unjust. Why
they retained such accounts is explained in my above article as follows:
compilers confronted hundreds of thousands of accounts in oral circulation and
applied the prevalent isnad (integrity of narrators in the transmission chain)
based screening methodology to accomplish their works. Human reason was in its
primitive form and what appears most bizarre and grotesque today, did not
register as such in the minds of the common people of Islam’s early centuries,
as they were accustomed to believe in legends and fairy tales. The great Imams,
who were among the most learned in their era, were cognizant of the ingress of
forged and fabricated ahadith in their compilations, but they were not in a
position to delete the suspect ahadith as long as they met their criteria of
screening. Accordingly they warned the community and posterity about it. This
happened a little over two centuries after the Prophet’s death. The
canonization of the Hadith as indirect revelation and repository of all worldly
knowledge happened after another two centuries or so.”
are responsible for popularizing the accounts graded as daif (literary, euphemism
for untenable, reprehensible, odious, shameful, legendary, and even preposterous,
re-paraphrased now) that the early Muslims understood as well as we understand what
‘bedding’ with a woman, exactly means. The referenced article also identified
the community of people for doing no further scrutiny of the early accounts as
therefore lies with the orthodoxy for failing to carry out any further scrutiny
of the ahadith over the last millennium. The problem also lies with some of the
ulalma as well as secular minded anti-Islamic Muslims and non-Muslims who
selectively pick preposterous and anti-Qur’anic ahadith to launch fatwas and
make high sounding statements to demonize Islam, and to bring shame and
disgrace to the early compilers of Hadith.”
we have to be ashamed of the contents of our theological sources, notably the
Hadith and the Classical Islamic Law.
Not at all! Here again the enlightened Muslims
including probably yourself make a gross mistake. The truth is captured as
follows in two of my articles on related themes:
its era, the knowledge contained in the Hadith enabled the growing Muslim
community to lead a peaceful, harmonious and progressive life and contributed
to the consolidation of the civil society of Islam. Besides, and more
importantly, it preserves the heritage of the Prophet and that of his companions.
Hence, the contribution of Hadith in the history of Islam remains paramount,
and anybody with slightest familiarity of the ethical and moral depravity (by
this day’s ethos) of the rival civilizations of the medieval ages, can only
admire the compilers of the ahadith in the superlatives.” Ref. Article 
“Down the centuries, it (the
Classical Sharia Law) enabled the Islamic civilization to offer enormously
higher standards of justice, peace and security of life and property to the
common people than the other major contemporaneous civilizations. It was also
the bedrock of pluralism that enabled the minority to flourish, live in harmony
with the Muslims - such as in Spain, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, India, and preserve
its own heritage and language - Aramic is still spoken in Damascus, the seat of
the Umayyads (661-750) – the first Islamic (dynastic) Caliphate. It was by far
the best system of law for almost a thousand years of human history as
testified by the highest echelon of Western scholarship.”
Ref: The Classical Islamic Law (Islamic Sharia Law) is NOT a Word of God!
is the way out of this mess?
This is explored in the conclusive part
of my joint publication, [Essential Message of Islam] which is not only a
focused exegetic work but also covers, among other things, as the points noted
above in a consolidated book:
Considering the canonized Hadith as we have in our hands
today, on their face value as truths supplementing and complementing the Qur’an
as many orthodox scholars advocate, or indirect inspiration as the classical
theory of Islamic law suggests,5 may lead to the following, to the great
detriment of the Muslim community:
The vast majority of Muslims,
lay or educated, will have neither time, nor the necessary books, nor the
scholarship to explore their expansive domains.
agencies, groups and states, will be able to pick conveniently from their
theological sources to legitimize their views and deeds in the whole range of
matters concerning their societies. Such matters could be of social, political
or theological nature, or pertain to statecraft, educational curriculum and
women’s status, for example. Likewise, they will be able to enter into
polemics, and have their clerics pass fatwas
against conflicting views on all such matters.
They will be questioning the
completeness of the Qur’an as a font of guidance and divine criteria of right
and wrong, despite its claim to be a book of wisdom that makes things clear
with all kinds of illustrations and elaboration (Notes 7-10/Preface).
Their theologians will continue
to nurture and perpetuate the thought process, scholastic disposition, and
paradigms that were normative in the early centuries of Islam and characterize
the Hadith literature, that is revered and taught by them, and thus keep those
Muslims under their direct influence, intellectually rooted in that era, with
The modern Kharijites6 and
Qaramites7 of Islam – the violent extremists, active in many
countries of the world, will reduce Islam, in the eyes of the non-Muslims
exposed to a patently biased media,8 to a cult of terrorism
and suicide bombing, creating enormous difficulties for the common peace loving
and law abiding Muslims settled in predominantly secular and non-Muslim societies.
Therefore, as suggested by some of the eminent Muslim
scholars, Muslims must endeavour to take guidance directly from the Qur’an.9
The best way to accomplish this, as the Qur’an advocates, is to probe into it,10
and seek the best meaning,11 as attempted in this work.
Why did my referenced articles failed to
generate much debate, which a joker compared with a bland food not palatable is
also captured in my referred joint publication as follows:
literature date back to the early medieval era, their continued teaching and
propagation, such as in traditional religious schools (madrassas), can adversely
impact the mental development of the students, shackling their power of
reasoning and virtually freezing their intellect into the early medieval era.” [p.
semiliterate sexually obsessed in a university library go only for the books
that may cater to their lust, the publicity hungry Muslims scholarship (not all
the Muslims of course) – Abul Ala Moududi for example and my namesake category (on
this website) of liberals, and a section of salafis and wahhabis, and orthodoxy
look for the daif (untenable, reprehensible, odious, shameful,
legendary, and even preposterous) and simply refuse to approach the Qur’an.
had done an article on the remoteness of the Muslims from the Qur’anic ideals that
traced this malaise as follows:
“As the Islamic civilization was taking long strides
of advancement, its orthodox theologians and ulamas were striving unceasingly
to freeze it at their era, in direct contradiction to the letter and spirit of
the Qur’an. Thus, they set aside the guidance of the Qur’an and venerated
theological discourses –notably the Hadith and the classical Islamic law as the
necessary and sufficient vehicles for understanding and implementing the
Qur’anic message. These were the ahl al Hadith - the orthodoxy. They advocated
that all that had to be learnt had already been learnt during the Prophet’s
time, and was contained in the Qur’an and the Prophet’s normative ways (Sunnah),
and the posterity was expected to simply imitate them . This resulted in
stagnancy of knowledge, abhorrence against any scientific advancement, and
division of universal knowledge into Islamic and European categories  – the
former foreclosed for all time and the latter growing exponentially. Their
retrogressive views were opposed by the rationalist theologians of the era –
the ahl al kalam, who advocated pursuit of knowledge in all fields, and promoted material
prosperity within the framework of the Qur'an. However, the orthodoxy
prevailed and intellectual activity in Islam came to a virtual halt. This happened around the end of the fourth
century of Islam, marked the beginning of the decline of Islamic civilization, and
set this faith and its followers on a path of decline.
continued decline for almost a millennium through to the present era,
punctuated by occasional upsurge in broad historical timeframe, the Muslims
have fallen into the lowest depths of a pit of failure. Any comparative assessment
of the deprivations, sufferings and injustices faced by the diverse
confessional communities at this juncture of history will single out the
Muslims as the most deprived, devastated and uprooted community, and the
biggest victims of human rights violations. From domestic violence against
their own womenfolk to internecine conflicts, sectarian violence, terrorism,
just and unjust wars, forced confinement in war zones and collective punishment
in the name of sanctions, to the psychological trauma of Islamophobia and
trivialization and marginalization in the pre-dominantly non-Muslim countries,
the Muslims have the greatest share of sufferings and humiliation in the
present day world. Likewise, any comparative analysis of achievements in the
diverse lawful pursuits and arenas of life (professional fields, academy,
bureaucracy, sports, art and culture for example) will find the Muslims as the
poorest and obscurest performer.
Ref: The Muslims’ ignorance /disregard of the
Qur’anic guidance and its Colossal and Recurring Cost.
this is enough for the moment. Let this trigger a debate if faith in the
divinity of the Qur’an has not completely left the Muslims. And it has left the
Muslims, I am only concerned about myself and God has no common boundary with
humanity. It is for the Muslims to leave Islam or to conflate it with something
which is no more than the human effort to capture divine speech in the Medieval
ages and live in ignominy – either as the likes of sexually obsessed,
figuratively illustrated above or enemies of Islam or their agents or
demonisers of Islam or fanatics, extremists, radicals and what have you. From
my side, my only task is to act as witness to the faith (2:143), and it is for
the fellow Muslims to take the issue seriously or trivially or simply duck it.
Mohd Yunus Saheb (2), You have absolutely nothing to fear from me. Even the idea
of someone fearing me is novel to me. I am
not in the business of killing critics of Islam. I am myself a critic of many
things that many Muslims consider as fundamental parts of Islam. The idea of
pillars, for instance. Or Islam-supremacism. I have denounced this mercilessly
in all the fora available to me.
may agree or disagree with you on any point but as editor it is my
responsibility to see that all honoured guests on the site respect each other
and engage in a serious discourse within the limits of decency and decorum. Even
the bitterest and angriest comments can be made in decent language.
Mr. Sadaf and probably Mr Raihan Nezami – although he
has not expressed himself – are angry with me or with the site. I deleted a
couple of words from one comment from each of them that I found indecent for a civilized
discourse. Mr. Sadaf says that while I have allowed you to insult others I am
not allowing them to insult you. I don’t think we should be trading insults at
all. I can see even the most senior commentators on the site exasperated by
your comments. But as long as comments are coached in a decent language they
are allowed. Abuse is not.
I may have made a mistake. I may have allowed some
abuse or insult on your part to go on the site. There are other editors and moderators
for comments on the site. They too can overlook something. If that is the case,
someone only needs to point out. If they do not want to repeat the insult in a
posted comment, they can ask me to only read the comment and not post it or not
post that portion. They can even write to me: email@example.com I would request
readers to remain vigilant and report to me if we make any mistakes. I can
assure Mr. Sadaf that I cannot knowingly allow anyone to insult him.
You have asked me for my agenda. Well, I just want an
open discourse. I have my thoughts and I want to present them too in discussions.
It used to be said
that Muslims simply cannot debate openly; they are so rigid in their sectarian
beliefs. New Age Islam has proved that wrong. Muslims can debate even the most
difficult, complex issues with layers of historical baggage piled on them. And
debate fruitfully. Not just empty debate. I have seen on the site people
changing their views. Aiman Reyaz has written how he changed his views after
reflecting on what he was reading on the NewAgeIslam.com. There are others who say that too. Some others
are not even conscious of that change. But I can see that they have, though
they sometimes tend to go back to their original way of thinking and then again
come back to moderation and so on, but clearly the process of change is evident,
probably more to others than to them.
If you want to know my views on various issues, you
will have to read my write-ups. Agenda of New Age Islam is just this: Open
discourse on all issues concerning Muslims and Islam and rethinking various
settled issues in that process.
Ahmed Saheb, thanks very much
indeed for taking time out to join the issue and giving your perceptions about what
New Age Islam is doing, right or wrong.
I would just like to make the following points:
1. It seems your main problem is with the labels
we use. I am entirely with you on that. I would love to call myself a fundamentlist,
as Mahathir Mohamad once said he would. But I have the same problem that he
had. If we do so, we create a completely wrong image of ourselves. The
connotation of the word, starting from Christian fundamentalists, has
completely changed and become contrary to what we think it should mean.
As far as I know all terms are
inadequate and convey meaning somewhat different from what is intended. But
people develop a certain sense of what they mean.
I would request you to suggest
alternatives. How do you think we should describe Wahhabis, Salafis, Deobandis,
Barelvis, Shias, Sunnis, Yazeedis, Ismailis, Islamists, Terrorists, Militants, Tableeghis,
Extremists, Moderates, Islamo-fascists, Liberals, Mullahs, Fundamentalists, Muslims,
Hindus. I will have no problem adopting your nomenclature if it conveys the
same sense in a better way. Indeed, I will be grateful, as I am myself acutely
aware of the inadequacy of all these terms.
2. I do not disown Islamists. Indeed, I
recommend to moderate, liberal Muslims not to do so. Many people do. Indeed,
after 9/11 that was the first reaction of many Muslims including me. I once
wrote that Jihadism is a new religion, kufr, not Islam. But after
reflection I realized that Islamists have always been a part of us right from
the time of Hazrat Ali. They made their first appearance at that time and were
called Kharjis (secedes). They were defeated and even supposedly exterminated
many a time but they always came back and were for a time very influential too
in what is considered the Golden era of Islam. So we cannot really disown them,
even by calling them seceders. They have been and are a part of us and we
should always acknowledge this even while distancing ourselves from them. (Ziauddin
Sardar’s reflections on this issue also helped me reach this conclusion.)
3. I do not see things in black and white. I
partly agree and disagree with practically every one. I agree in part with practically
every one that I condemn. I see good and bad in everyone including myself. Like
Somerset Maugham I see so many shortcomings in myself that it becomes difficult
for me to criticize, much less condemn others. However, while condemning evil,
I do criticise and even condemn some people when absolutely imperative. That’s
why New Age Islam is so open to all sorts of criticism of every one by any one written
in a decent language. I have published a statement by Zakir Naik’s office that
came to us by way of explanation on some article. I am willing to publish a statement
by Yazid in his defence or present day Yazidis including Zakir Naik in Yazid’s
defence. Then, of course, we will discuss and debate that.
4. There are no pillars in Islam. The very
word pillar is non-existent. God Himself demolished this theory by saying it is
not Taqwa to face east or west in prayers in the very first sentence of the
definition of Taqwa which can probably be called the foundation of Islam. Pillars
are an invention of people who, knowingly or unknowingly, want to keep Muslims
confined to namaz, roza and thinking that they have acquired taqwa and are
superior to others. The self-righteousness of namazis is to be seen to be beloved.
God knew this would happen. Hence the disclaimer in the very first sentence of
the verse defining Taqwa:
“It Is NOT TAQWA That
You Turn Your Faces Toward East Or West, But It Is Taqwa to believe in
Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book and the MESSENGERS,
to spend of your substance OUT OF LOVE for Him, for your kin, for
orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for The
Ransom Of Slaves; to be steadfast in prayer and practice regular charity; to fulfil the contracts you have
made; to be firm and patient, in pain and adversity. Those are the truthful and
those are the muttaqun.” [Qur’an 2:177] (Emphasis mine.)
5. It not a correct impression that New Age
Islam is more interested in an intercourse with the rest of the word than a
discourse within the community. Let me quote your impression in full:
“The forum while claiming to be
inclusive as far as the rest of the World is concerned, is unbelievably short
sighted and exclusivist when it concerns the Muslim community. May be that is
its way of proving its credentials to the rest of the World. What I hear the
message of the forum to be is “Yes, the extremists, the scholars and Mullahs,
the Salafis, the Wahhabis the Naiks” etc etc are scum of the earth and we are
not part of them. We are with you in condemning them - rather we will lead you
in fighting them.”
credentials are no different than that of the community. For the outside world
we are all one, no matter what we say. By the outside world I am as much
considered a terrorist as any other Muslim. Look at how people address me in
Europe while wanting to know more about Islam. Invariably they couch their
sentences in this way: “We go to our churches, pray, shake hands with fellow Christians
and come home in a glow of spiritual harmony. You go to your church, with a suicide
belt on, kill yourself and fellow Muslims and think your God will send you to
Heaven where 72 houris and other worldly temptations are awaiting you. What
kind of a religion is this?” Do you think they see any difference between me
and the Islamist terrorist? And will it be right for me to blame them?
by declaring yourself an ex-Muslim, you do not protect yourself from the image
that Salafis and Islamist terrorists have created for you. Until, of course you
change your name and bearing. Even that may not save you really. Sikhs have
been regularly mistaken for Muslims and harassed and killed since 9/11.
our focus is not even on a discourse about violence and peace. It is rethinking
Islam for adapting to the needs of the present and future. I think of the
future that is awaiting us a millennium ahead, try to see the trends of where
our coming generations are likely to go and wonder how we can adapt to the
needs of those periods, of course beginning with out own.
of ijtehad were closed by our great ulema a millennium ago; we are in the situation
we are in as a result. This massive door has be coaxed open, Muslims have to
start thinking afresh. And for this we have to value our thinking people; not all
of us are. These thinking people may be going astray. It is these people we
have to engage in discourse with; listen to their woes and formulate answers to
their queries. But for of all this, we have to ourselves clarify our thoughts.
No one of us is the fount of wisdom.
why we need a global forum from where all Muslims regardless of their ideological
bent of mind can share their thoughts, even argue with one another and thus
lead to an advancement of thought, probably a consensus, on some issues. Apostates
have as much right to share their thoughts and doubts with us as do Islamists. Have
I ever stopped any one from having their say? I only stop people from seeking
to stop others.
Why do non-Muslims come on the
site and say what they have to say about Islam? Well, they are studying Islam
in large numbers. They are going to original sources revered by all Muslims and
finding pornography, violence. We are not prepared to denounce these. They are
getting more worried. They have a reason to get worried. They think, wrongly,
that they are going to be the next targets of Islamist terrorists. But their
number will come later. The first target of these terrorists is the mainstream
Muslims who don’t agree with them. Only when they have converted or eliminated the
entire apostate Muslim community – approximately 90 per cent of us - they will
think of the so-called kafirs. They have not hidden their agenda. But
non-Muslims do not understand and are worried. Actually, it is us for whom time
is running out.
Naturally, when your house is on
fire, you are in the middle of a war, you think of protecting yourself and then
only plan for future and take an inventory of your past, etc. So, I admit, our discourse
tends to get more focussed on the issues of contemporary relevance, war and
peace, co-existence with other communities etc. But that cannot be helped for the moment. However,
that is not our main goal. That is only a part of our agenda which is getting
too much attention for obvious reasons.
like to share some of my thoughts with you and the community of New Age Islam.
brother in law sent me a link to the site and my association with New Age Islam
began with a visit to the site on 9th July and a response to Jay
Walker. Let me share my impressions of the website and what I think it is doing
right and what I think it is doing wrong. First and foremost, what is its
vision, mission and goals?
what I have gathered from my association, the site is a platform for:
1. The educated liberal Muslim to show to the World that
he believes in pluralism, muliti-culturalism, tolerance, respect for all faiths
inclusiveness, science, progress, gender equality etc etc.
2. Influence the Muslim community to adopt its values and
These are laudable
it actually doing?
1. The forum while claiming
to be inclusive as far as the rest of the World is concerned, is unbelievably
short sighted and exclusivist when it concerns the Muslim community. May be
that is its way of proving its credentials to the rest of the World. What I
hear the message of the forum to be is “Yes, the extremists, the scholars and
Mullahs, the Salafis, the Wahhabis the Naiks” etc etc are scum of the earth and
we are not part of them. We are with you in condemning them - rather we will
lead you in fighting them.
afraid that the World will not buy this argument. We may be trying to protect
our own World but we will be consumed with the rest. That is the lesson from
history. The other clear danger is that it will remain a forum with a small
following and little influence outside its own members.
objection to using the word Islamism and Islamist also stem from the thinking
that by doing so we disown a part of our own society and join hands with the rest
of the World by using their terminology which I think breeds prejudice of the
type that resulted in the holocaust. We are hunting with the hounds. I condemn
terrorism on moral and religious grounds as well as because it is downright
stupid for the weak to follow an aggressive policy and invite further misery.
Turning the other cheek is the right policy under the circumstances. However, I
will be the last person to ‘disown’ the problem and blame it on the Salafis, Wahhabis
etc. By disowning the problem, we cannot solve it nor save ourselves from the
consequences, however much we may show ourselves to be different.
Shahin is arguing in his column that we are many things and our identity is
multi faceted but this insight is not reflected in the way we deal with the
community of Mullahs, Tablighis, Salafis , Wahhabis, admirers of Naik etc.
Everyone is painted with the same brush antagonizing a large number of people
whom we could otherwise attract and influence.
I am no
supporter of Naik and equally condemn his methods but he is not without his
plus points for which he has a large following. In a situation where the Muslim
suffers from enormous self doubts, people like Naik have a therapeutic value.
They seek persons like Naik to gain a false sense of worth because there are
not many good alternatives. I do not see New Age Islam filling the gap as it
only creates doubts about what it stands for and alienates people by its openly
hostile stance to large communities of Muslims.
Mullahs and the terrorists cannot be disowned and distanced either. We need to
be sending appropriate messages to all inviting them to an enlightened vision
for the Muslim community. We need to worry less about the non-Muslims and worry
more about the Muslims. The World will discover on its own what we are and what
we stand for. Right now, I see the forum focused on telling the non-Muslim
World what we are by telling them what we are not. We therefore lampoon and
criticise our own scholars and community including our five pillars. It is the
Muslim who adheres to the pillars of Islam who will remain a Muslim when the
going gets tough while the rest jump the fence.
also vary of all labels including fundamentalist, literalist etc. A person who
is strong in the fundamentals of science alone can contribute as a scientist.
So how is a non-fundamentalist Muslim a good Muslim? The legal provisions and
the moral code in the Quran are meant to be understood in the literal sense and
followed. Otherwise, the Quran is not Kitabum Mubeen. Otherwise, we are saying
indirectly, that Islam is fundamentally flawed.
us by all means attack all that is reprehensible without using labels such as
Salafi, Wahhabi, Tablighi, fundamentalist, literalist, Islamist etc.
@ Editor, I
am not writing to complain about something against my fellow commentators.
If you feel it worth, please let the reader know your reform plan.
I am against the supremacy of either faith or any ism. I never claim I am a
I believe that by trial and error humankind reached to this stage. Human kind
is not an ideal entity. To err is nature of human being and to correct it, is a
lofty action. No religion including Islam produced ideal society. Every
religion have good and bad elements. We can be good and bad with and without
belief in God. In spirituality domain, we can choose any stream, to realize the
I am not a religious person. I want freedom of thoughts which is absent in
Muslim society. I don't seek freedom to promote evil. Evil is not what Muslims
consider evil. We all know what is good and what is evil.
I see we are progressing in both good and evil.
I respect the rights of you or any other person. You are much aware what is bad
with Muslim community. Why they are not at peace with other communities in the
whole world?. Are not Muslims seen with contempt and suspicion in the whole
world? Is it due to conspiracy of NON-Muslims?
I take you at face value. You may be truly involved in reform and may not be. I
have no place for blind faith. I admire you not because you are an Editor of
this site Or I am afraid of you. I admire you for you write boldly on issues no
Muslim dare to think.
I want to puncture the balloon of supremacy of any belief. It is the root cause
of we are not in the mainstream.
I request you to curb the pride in me whenever you feel it is there and to
criticize me when wrong.
Have a nice day