Islam and Sectarianism
In 2006, when Shia tribes in Iraq wanted to retaliate after
Salafi-jihadists demolished a sacred shrine, Grand Ayatollah Sistani, Iraq’s
highest religious authority, told the Shias that the 'Sunnis are ourselves, not
just our brothers'. Sunni tribes also aggressively fought and almost defeated
Al-Qaeda in Iraq, an earlier incarnation of ISIS....
Think, dear patriotic Pakistanis, before you share photos of Israeli
terror and Donald Trump and Bharatiya Janata Party and Muslims in Burma and
Yemen and Syria. Think of all those poor, terrified, silent Christians who do
not know what their crime is living in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Think
of every mullah who has tried to hijack power in our country....
factions in conflict—a polite word for acrimony and divisions—under the
umbrella of the very Deen that instructs them that they are committing shirk by
rejecting the commandment of God, in whom they believe, that is, they have
not be of those who are polytheist-mushrik......
As Muslims, we already have enough Islamophobia and religious
misunderstandings to occupy our lives until the end of time. Therefore the
misunderstandings and bigotry that happen within our own communities is
baffling and honestly quite sad...
Was this country only made for Muslims? Do we, Christians, have no right
to live our lives? Will justice be done? Is this a safe place for our children?
I am familiar with government-issued statements that minorities have been given
equal rights; some minority parliamentarians are doing the same. Moreover, some
so-called patriots try to show their loyalty by criticising and alienating
Dr. Mike Ghouse
First of all, Prophet Muhammad knew only one group of people; Muslims!
Prefixes like Sunni, Shia, Ahmadiyya, Bohra, Ismaili, WD Muhammad, Alawaite,
Deobandi, Barelvi, Ahl-e-Hadith, Ahl-e-bait etc., were not in his vocabulary
nor can anyone ascribe these words to him – he did not use them. ....
I am proud that an Ahmadi in Pakistan strengthened my faith more than
any Maulvi could, that a Hindu in Pakistan showed me the art of coexistence
finer than a Muslim here could and that a Pakistani Christian taught me the
value of prayer better than any preacher could.....
Ajit Kumar Singh
Despite decades of military subjugation, demographic engineering, and
the ceding of some territories and influence to China, Islamabad has failed to
win the support of the people of GB. Its further militarization of the region
perpetuates a strategy of indiscriminate use of force to silence local voices,
even as local populations are progressively marginalized.....
Unlike the Taliban, who follow the Deobandi and Salafi strains of Islam,
Barelvis are relatively tolerant of minorities. Still, when I spoke with Raza
Rumi, a commentator and analyst based in Ithaca, he said that blasphemy was a
key issue for the Barelvis and that they condone violence to protect religion.
At a place where differences had no significance, we were the guests of
God. Hence, we were very careful not to upset our host. We knew none of us,
black or white, Shiite or Sunni, rich or poor, were privileged in the presence
of God. We were competing to please one another, because we knew that this was
also the way to please the Creator....
The murderer of Salman Taseer met his fate in Pakistan. Perhaps this was
a way for Pakistan's army elite and politicians to deliver a message to
official bodyguards that no one would be spared if they killed bosses. However,
there is no such message for Shahbaz Bhatti's murderers, since Bhatti belonged
to Pakistan's poor Christian community. ....
Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor
The sectarian divisions that have evolved into armed conflicts and produced armed militias are politically manufactured. Those who would tear us Arabs apart to suit their own agendas are using fiery religious rhetoric for their own ends. We, the citizens of the United Arab Emirates – and all GCC states – have never differentiated between Sunni and Shiite nationals.
The fact is that Balochistan can never truly develop, even with ten more of the economic corridors or industrial zones, unless and until there isn’t first a development of human capacity in the province. Infrastructure, rail and roads do not develop the people, it’s the people that develop and maximise the benefit out of infrastructure and other projects.
The humans of Karachi are suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, a condition where the hostage starts expressing empathy for his captor. Karachites are psychologically ailing on many levels and need healing of all sorts but this can only come from introspection. If he were alive today, Mohammed Ali Jinnah would be considered a mahajir and a person of a persecuted religious minority as well, and this certainly isn’t the Pakistan one’s forefathers moved hundreds of kilometres for.
face systematic discrimination merely because of their race, ethnicity, and
national origin, depriving them of electricity, water, schools, and access to
roads, while nearby Jewish settlers enjoy all of these state-provided
benefits." To enforce this "two-tier system", the Israeli
military conducts nightly raids, detains Palestinians without trial or charge,
minorities such as Christians, Hindus and Sikhs have been the victims of
suicide bomb attacks on their neighbourhoods, and their community members have been
converted to Islam against their will. Houses of worship of non-Muslims as well
as of Muslim minority sects have been attacked and bombed while filled with
beginning of the last century, when reformers dominated their civil societies
under secular dictators, to the end of it, when they reached back to a more “original”
or “pure” Islam while aspiring to democracy, they have seemed to embrace an
internecine frenzy. A sliding back to “pure” Islam has inevitably become
sectarian between the Sunni majority and the Shia minority, to say nothing of
the other deviant sects that get trampled as the big sects brawl.
Those who are
being oppressed have to be from a similar background. Those who were killed
have to share their beliefs. If they do not have identical beliefs, the news of
their oppression or genocide deserves a cursory glance and nothing more. “Closing
the gap” doesn’t mean for everyone to homogenize their beliefs, it means
extending our hands in respect and recognition of the fact that someone from
another school of thought is still our equal in faith. ....
demolitions is therefore vital to ward off any future violations. This
settler-dominated Israeli coalition is sniffing every opportunity to expand its
settler-colonial empire in the West Bank. The demolitions are one core part of
bringing this about and one that Israel has practised around 50,000 times since
today is a perfect storm — the product of a confluence of factors at play in
the region. The first culprit in stoking sectarian conflict is Islamism. This
modern-day ideology, born in the 1930s, calls for an ideal Islamic state built
on the foundations of Islamic law and Sharia. The Islamic state is a utopian
panacea that looks to religion to perfect modernity. But the Islamic state is
not a generic idea, as it requires harkening to either Shiite or Sunni
conceptions of Islam….
come from the moon,” said Sheikh Faisal Essawi, the mayor of Amiriyat Falluja,
using the Arabic acronym for the Islamic State. “It did not grow from the
earth. Part of our people became Daesh. Because of corruption. Because of
injustice. Because of the culture of hate.”....
mosques issue their five calls to prayer every day, they're amplified through
loudspeakers and echo down every street. But the Sunni man who sings the call
to prayer for this mosque does it indoors, so few people hear. This worship
space is so obscure that some foreign news articles have stated as fact that
there is no Sunni mosque in Tehran at all.....
develops in amalgams; we are products of all the layers that Islam went through
over the years in South Asia. Islam itself has no room for casteism and does
not recognise one race as being superior to the other. Hazrat Bilal was a
former slave who was the first one to give the Azaan (call for prayer) yet
people assume those with darker skin are inferior to them in Zaat (caste)....
But there is
one big difference between intra-Muslim and intra-Christian divisions. The
former are tending to grow wider, as tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia
exacerbates the sectarian chasm in every other place where different forms of
Islam coincide, from the civil-war zones of Syria and Yemen to the streets of
Beirut and Islamabad. Among Christian leaders, meanwhile, it is generally agreed
that everything should be done to overcome division.....