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Books and Documents

Islamic Society

Even the biggest optimists could not imagine that the picture of an unveiled woman would appear on the cover of Voice of al-Azhar, al-Azhar’s official magazine, because it was forbidden. Allowing so-called liberated women to publish opinion articles in al-Azhar’s magazines discussing controversial social issues was, until recently, inconceivable....

 

Mosque Pulpit Belongs To the State Not To the Clerics
Hasan Aftab

What do Imam Abu Hanifa, Imam Shafii, Imam Malik and Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal have in common? It’s well known that all of them were men of great learning: between them they founded the four schools of Sunni jurisprudence: each named after one of them. But there’s more: not one of them ever led a Friday prayer. Because the Friday prayer (along with the twice-yearly Eid prayer) features two sermons. Which brings the mosque pulpit into the equation – something that belongs to the state (or the government), and not to any scholar, however learned – not to mention the run-of-the-mill cleric....

 

Mullah Power: Pakistan Must Firmly Reject the Rule of Religiously Charged Mobs
Pervez Hoodbhoy

Imran Khan now wants to fight fire with fire. His current talking points are fulfilling ‘Allama Iqbal’s dream’, and remaking Pakistan as the seventh-century state of Medina. His information minister has just announced unprecedented celebrations of the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) birthday next week, and a grand Khatm-e-Nabuwwat conference in Islamabad. Invitees will include the imam of the Holy Ka’aba, the mufti of Syria, and various high clerics...

Friday Sermons and Their Importance
Dr. Ali Al-Ghamdi

Last Friday, the imam, in his first sermon, addressed the issue of sponsors, who hire workers without having any job for them to do. Hence, these sponsors ask the workers to find a job by themselves. In return, they charge the workers monthly amounts, and those who refuse to comply with the sponsor’s orders are sent back to their country. The imam emphasized that this is wrong on religious, legal and moral grounds. He further said that those who do this should seek forgiveness and stop doing it, because they will be held accountable for it on the Day of Judgment....

 

Everyone who affirms faith in life, hope, love and compassion has implicitly affirmed Muhammad (SAW). The Muhammad (SAW) of history is unknown or little known or little appreciated by vast majority of mankind but the metahistorical Muhammad celebrated in great Na’t poetry in general and Sufi poets in particular is implicitly known by everyone who cares to live and beautify it or pursue perfections of human state.....

 

Jamal Khashoggi: Violating the Deceased’s Right to an Honourable Muslim Burial Is an Ancient Crime
Mohammad H. Fadel

In Islamic law, burying the dead is a collective obligation – an obligation that falls on the entire community of Muslims. If they fail in that duty, they are collectively sinful. Moreover, as jurists have taught, any Muslim who fails to bury the deceased and perform the funeral prayer over him despite being in a position to do so, is not only a sinner, but is also guilty of a crime and subject to appropriate punishment...

 

Why More Muslims Don’t Question the Powers That Control Our Most Sacred Sites, Ka'aba and Masjid-e-Nabwi
Aymann Ismail

As with most Muslims, my desire to complete the hajj carries an intense emotional and spiritual weight. It isn’t just a ritual—it’s a foundational and indispensable pillar of my religion. I can’t say I’ll never go. I must. But I do know I can’t focus on my hajj while Saudis make a mockery of the journey and corrupt Islam without consequences....

Saudi Arabia Exploited the Podium of the Grand Mosque in Mecca by Using Its Imams to Praise, Sanctify and Defend Its Rulers
Khaled M. Abou El Fadl

Most Muslims will always prefer a tolerant and ethically conscientious Islam to the variant championed by the crown prince and the acquiescent Saudi clergy. By using the Grand Mosque to whitewash acts of despotism and oppression, Prince Mohammed has placed the very legitimacy of the Saudi control and guardianship of the holy places of Mecca and Medina in question....

Muslims Perceive Blasphemy as an Almost Physical Injury: An Intolerable Offense That Hurts both God and the Faithfuls
Steve Pinkerton

In other words, the real question for the 21st century has not been whether blasphemy counts as a crime. Instead it’s been about who, or what — God or the state, religion or pluralism — is the injured party. Instead of preventing injury to God, these laws now seek to prevent injury to the social fabric of avowedly secular states. That’s true not only of the West’s centuries-old blasphemy laws but also of more recent ones....

They did not need to have a day or a month devoted to the Prophet because they had devoted their entire lives to him. Today our lives and our outlooks bear little resemblance to theirs. We praise but do not listen to him; we claim to love, but refuse to follow; we claim to believe but lead lives like those who don’t. We emphasise what the Companions ignored and ignore what they emphasized. They loved the Prophet, Sall-Allahu Alayhi wa Sallam, and had their lives to show for it....

 

Islamic Banks Can Offer a Range Of Products Which Can Be Used As Alternative To Conventional Banking System
Syed Ali Imran

Statistically speaking, at present, assets of Islamic Banks witnessed a whooping growth of 12.9 percent by the end of fiscal year 2017. The industry’s asset base has reached to Rs 2.5 trillion with a growth of 22 percent YoY June — 2018, which accounts for almost 13 percent of the overall banking system while its deposits surged at Rs2.03 trillion reporting a growth of 18.2 percent for the same period. Five full-fledged Islamic banks and 16 Islamic banking branches of conventional banks are providing Shariah-compliant products and services...

In Islamic Republic Of Pakistan the Clergy Has Become a Force to Be Reckoned With
Sarfraz Ahmed Rana

Holy men (and sometimes women) through their decisively large pockets of disciples, largely controlling and commanding the day to day discourse and narrative building in poverty-stricken South Asia. As time goes by, ecclesiastic’s intervention has become ubiquitous in every segment and most dangerously the power to control the narrative than any other institute enjoys. Over the years, the role of religious institution overstretched akin to Roman Church...

Until Recently, Pakistanis Angst Was Reserved For the Deobandi Groups but the Rise of the TLP May Change This
Arifa Noor

But for everyone, the Deobandis, the troublesome children, were the focus of attention. The Barelvis, on the other hand, were the peaceniks no one worried about. In fact, in the post 9/11 world, the latter were even given donor support in order to nurture the more ‘peaceful Islam’ as if the problem were of interpretation rather than politics....

 

On Becoming an Authentic Human Person from the Perspective of Islamic Sufism
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam

More than submission to the demands of a legalistic God, the “authentic human” as “Insan al Kamil” loves God by becoming an embodiment of love himself/herself; and loving to save all sentient beings and not loving God to be simply saved. To be an “authentic human” entails an immeasurable loving kindness that enables one to realize the common bond of existence that ties together all real existents in this ongoing universe. It is this common bond of existence that allowed St. Francis of Assisi and Hazrat Rabi’ah Basri Adawiyyah to claim brotherhood with the sun, sisterhood with the moon, and kinship with every being that exists in the cosmos....

 

Islamisation of Turkey's Education System: Religious Organizations Pump Their Own Ideologies on Children through Classes in 'Values Education'
Uzay Bulut

According to Feray Aytekin Aydoğan, president of the Education Union:

"That children -- from the age of nine -- are handed over to people who are affiliated with the Diyanet and who are not educators is a violation of children's rights... This hafiz education is unlawful... The students who go to mosques for this training will be away from schools and this is a crime and a violation of their rights."...

 

Our True Religion Builds A Good Society Where All Can Live Freely And Pursue Visions of Highest Values
Moin Qazi

The pluralistic world created by the diffusion of understanding of world’s major faith-traditions has made religion a vital resource in the task of building a good society, a world where all can live freely and pursue visions of the highest values.

Broadly speaking, Qur’an teaches Tauheed (Unitarianism) and stresses on the rights and privileges of people linking them with God and achievable through noble deeds. Following these principles, the power is entrusted in God rather than just in people. Moreover, Islamic Democracy does not propagate nationalism as nationalism is contrary to Islamic teachings. Thus, without propagating for one global Islamic state, it propagates fraternity between the Muslims living in different Muslim countries. ...

The Quran is teaching balance and equity — to enjoy the bounties and share them with others. Do good and seek to benefit others. Those others are not necessarily always Muslims, for the Quran teaches that respect is owed to every human being regardless of religion. Dignity and freedom are guaranteed to each person regardless of origin or whether they are a part of a majority or a minority....

Prophet Muhammad (SAW): There Is No Bedouinism in Islam
Akbar Ahmed

All the same, tribes men created various genealogical links to the Prophet (S.A.W), reinforcing their relationship to him and enhancing their own prestige. The notion of lineage affiliation with the Prophet (S.A.W) makes Muslim tribal peoples intensely loyal to him…

 

The propaganda machine presents this common core of Islamic culture as a great burden, but one only needs to look at the unfortunate millions who are left on their own in the name of freedom, to ascertain the truth. Is it not true that if one were to draw a family-and-home-life-disaster map of the world, it will coincide with a map of the Western world? The distinctly safe area will be the Muslim world, with a gray area within it coinciding with the areas of Westernisation…

 

The Deep Adherence to Islam and Barely Political Is the Unique Feature of New Indian Muslim Middle Class
Hilal Ahmed

The deep adherence to Islam is the second unique feature of this class of Muslims. The conventional binary between practicing Mulla-type Muslims and the self-declared secular Muslims does not function in this case, the new Muslim elite practices religion as a ‘private affair’ by creating a thin line between professional commitments and religious obligations. This privatisation fits well with the emerging form of Islamic religiosities, which advocate a highly apolitical engagement with worldly affairs....

Self-Flagellation Ritual: The Roots of This Cultural Practice Have No Connection to Canada
Tarek Fatah

In the Middle East and the Indian Subcontinent, self-flagellation is not just beating chests in wild unison; it extends to whipping oneself with razor-sharp blades, cracking skulls, and bleeding baby boys with cuts on their heads. This year, the self-flagellation ritual reached a point when last Sunday hundreds of young men took off their shirts on University Avenue facing the U.S. Consulate and started beating themselves in frightening unison....

 

 Masjid is very important and both religiously and culturally an integral part of Islam. There are clear texts in Hadith where it is emphatically instructed that Muslim men must offer 5 daily prayers in Masjid with congregations. This has been in practice ever since Islam existed in this world. If some individuals are not doing so then this is their personal default which does not change rules. Hadith, Fiqh and all Islamic sources are unequivocally stating that Masjid is an integral part of Islam and Muslim society....

Islamic Philosophical Legacy needed to End Present Day Tension
Fahad Suleiman Shoqiran

Curiosity to learn from adjoining civilizations was the features of the times. There are immortal names in our Islamic history such as Al-Kindi, Al-Farabi, Ibn Arabi, Al-Razi, Ghazali, Avicenna, Averroes, Brethren of Purity and hundreds others. Decadence hit the Muslim world, as if the universe called on the world to stop thinking and the world responded, as was lamented by Ibn Khaldun.....

 

Sufism Is Based On Certain Premises That Are Unfamiliar To Our Contemporary Environment
Kabir Helminski

Sufism, once the heart and soul of Islamic civilization, has been pushed to the margins, reduced to a mere intellectual preference or curiosity in Europe and America, associated with cultism and backwardness in South Asia, considered a dangerous heresy in Saudi Arabia and Iran, and a merely tolerated minority in other Muslim majority nations. But Sufism, as a comprehensive system focused on body, mind, heart, and soul, offers a unique path forward for humanity at a time when our very humanness is challenged.,,,

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NEW COMMENTS

  • so the historians who accompanied the marauders were dishonest.but bernard lewis is the very epitome of honest.your dishonesty is astounding.just as it suits you ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • there is an uncontrollable deceit and dishonesty in every comment you write.and your puny logical capacity cannot see that religious texts are full of ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • There is uncontrollable hatred for Muslims and Islam in almost every comment that you write. What is hardwired in the human brain will be reflected ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Sagacious and cogent article! Transmitting this message to the masses in Pakistan is an almost impossible task.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Is this Asian Age report generally accepted as being factual or not?http://www.asianage.com/delhi/najeeb-ahmed-was-asked-leave-hostel-october-15-912
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The entire wahabiyat and deobandiyat consider  celebration of mawlid Nabi to be bidat. and therefore they bomb participants of Juluse Muhammadiya
    ( By Talha@gmail.com )
  • Suicide attack at Afghan religious gathering kills over 50Dozens of people were wounded in the attack, health ministry spokesman says, which targeted top clerics ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقی )
  • The author is living abroad. If he lives in Pakistan he would not have written this audacious article.If he wrote, sure, he would be assassinated.
    ( By dr.A.Anburaj )
  • This article is surprising me.Thanks the author for writing this article which aims to protect minorities in Pakistan.But minorities have no hope in Pakistan. ...
    ( By dr.A.Anburaj )
  • Congrats on this auspicious occasion of Mawlid Nabi
    ( By Sarwar )
  • اسلام میں جمہوریت کا مقاماسلام کا مقصد دنیا بھر کے اچھے لوگوں کو ایک مشترکہ مقصد، ناانصافی اور تشدد کے خلاف لڑنے کے لئے ...
    ( By Abdul Moid Azhari )
  • Well put. There are crimes in which one complies through silence but then here, left's complicity is of a far higher degree. Their complicity with ...
    ( By Areeb Rizvi )
  • logic was never your forte.let me try to really make it simple enough for you.aggression has biological, evolutionary and genetic basis.men are biological, evolutionary ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Extremely shameful and sad! If such things can happen at JNU, and in the national capital, what remains of justice and decency?
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Muslim historians accompanying Muslim conquerors said what their masters wanted to hear. Their exaggerations get quoted by pseudo-historians like Ariel and Will Durant who ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off says aggression is a biological fact but then goes on to blame monotheistic religions for it! Such a person would say anything ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • “WITH EXCEPTIONS, WHATEVER CREATIVE AND SIGNIFICANT IN JEWISH LIFE HAPPENED IN ISLAMIC LAND.” [highlight in capital letter is mine]
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • Mr. Hats Off asked quotes from anti-Muslim authors. Let me quote from his favorite author, Bernard Lewis.
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • Oxford Research Encyclopedia states:“Muslim-Jewish relations began with the emergence of Islam in 7th-century Arabia, but contacts between pre-Jewish Israelites and pre-Muslim Arabs had been ...
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • just as for the fraudulent "moderates" it is the other way round. you have your evidence, others have theirs. don't whine and wheeze.the historical ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • aggression is a biological fact. aggression is an evolutionary need. aggression is a hard wired trait.that is precisely why much of religious text (especially ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Hats Off has only two hats, one as a spreader of hate, the other as an exemplar of rudeness1
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • For Hats Off,  only those experts have credibility who say bad things about Islam! His Muslim bashing has become a jehadi-like frenzy!
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • A slap in the face of those who claim that aggression is a product of religions!
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off seems to have become the official denier of Allah on this site!
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off says, "the issue is whether if apostasy and blasphemy are crimes AT ALL. they are NOT. they are laudable acts. they are ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Arshad Alam needs to worry at this time about the impending Hindu Rashtra in India rather than what happened in 1947. Pakistanis do find themselves ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Ur essay throws some hopes on Pakistani establishment, which at the least is a houseful of chicanery; indulge on doublespeak in the hope of ...
    ( By Zafir Alam )
  • Apostasy /abandoning Islam is a severe crime and punishable with death. When Umar was on the seat of Khalifa II one of his Governor ...
    ( By dr.A.Anburaj )
  • this is not for mr. t.o shanavascan we quote other authors who entirely disagree with these "khandaani" experts?
    ( By hats off! )
  • dear mr. arshad alam, the issue is NOT whether asia bibi was WRONGLY or RIGHTLY accused of blasphemy. that is immaterial. she has EVERY ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • get back to where you belong.
    ( By hats off! )
  • please do not write op-eds if allah knows best.write something with which you do not need to do "plausible deniability".for god's sake do not ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Human aberrations like the ones Hats Off describes are present galore in several other religions but Islam seems to be the sole target of ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The position that Islam takes is:(2:256) Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • مسلمان ہجرت کے لئے مجبور نہیں عبدالمعید ازہری ہجرت اسلامی تاریخ کا ایک اہم اور ایسا ناگزیر پہلو ہے جو اسلامی ریاست کی بنیاد کا سبب بنا۔ ہجرت کا مطلب ...
    ( By Abdul Moeed Azhari )
  • ہم کسی کو مجبور نہیں کرتے کہ وہ میلاد النبیﷺ کو مانیں یا اسکا انعقاد کریں۔ یہ تو اپنی اپنی قسمت ہے۔ لیکن اگر ...
    ( By Syed Soharwardy )
  • Why Indian Muslims do not need to follow Extremists’ Call for Hijrat The Misconstrued Concept of Hijrat and the Position of Indian Ulema Both these articles in NAI referred ...
    ( By Rashid Samnakay )
  • The following is not for Mr. Hats Off. History of Muslim-Jewish relationship negate anti-semantism is of Earopean origin:Muslims and Jews lived together helping each other ...
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • The Saudi hate towards Eid Milad un Nabi ﷺ is the root cause of extremism & intolerance among some Muslims. Those Muslims who celebrate ...
    ( By Syed Soharwardy )