By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi, New Age Islam
12 November 2018
Muslim clerics are required to clarify the universal message of Islam and the Prophetic models which encourage peaceful coexistence with all communities. They are required to do so in the best way both in words and actions, in order to curb the rising hatred and disorder [Fasad] in the land. Based on the established major maxims of Islamic jurisprudence supported by the Quran and Sunnah, as they learn in their Islamic seminaries, they should step to the fore and help the multi-cultural society live with positive mindset.
The role model that Muslims must follow for developing coexistence is the beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), as God Almighty says about him in the Quran “There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] remembers Allah often”. (33:21)
Historically analyzing we find that the beloved Prophet has left Muslims with four significant models of developing coexistence with non-Muslims whether they live in minority or majority, in or out of Islamic country. We find the first model in the Makki period where patience and coexistence were characterized as the major rules of conduct. The model of Abyssinia is the second model where loyalty was the dominant value. The third model can be seen in the first stage of Medinian period which featured pluralism and peaceful coexistence. The fourth exemplary model is the second stage of Medinian period where justice and intellectual insight were striking features of this model.
These four models are completely ignored in the methodology adopted by the extremist think-tank living in our modern time. Strange as it is that these extremist mindsets take refuge in Non-Muslim countries and enjoy protection, yet they repeatedly stick to using ill words directing to the original natives of such countries. Such extremists make much negative speech and persistently express their hatred and bigotry towards them for not being Muslims. This is the main reason that incites negative feelings of hate, prejudice and bigotry against Muslims and Islam.
Such extremists are actually working against the Quran which asks to follow in the footsteps of the beloved Prophet (peace be upon him), as God Almighty says, “There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] remembers Allah often”. (33:21). This Quranic verse teaches to follow the Prophetic models but sadly enough, the extremists who claim to follow the Quran do not follow the four main models of the beloved Prophet as discussed above.
It is also important for the Muslim clerics and scholars to tell their followers that after the Prophet (peace be upon him) migrated to Medinah, the Muslims not only achieved religious freedom but also ensured that freedom and security for all Medinian communities including Muslims, Jews, Hypocrites and Pagans. They must keep in their mind that the beloved Prophet established what is popularly known as the Meethaq-e-Madina (the Constitution of Medinah). This Constitution focused mainly on four principles; 1) peaceful and secure environment for all regardless of religion, caste, culture etc, 2) protection of religious freedom for all communities, 3) equal opportunity for public participation in the spheres of economy, military and politics, and 4) an affirmation of individual responsibility. This inspired the groundwork for a “social contract” comprising a commitment to equal treatment to all the Medinian citizens.
A regular Columnist with NewAgeIslam.com, Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi Dehlvi is an Alim and Fazil (Classical Islamic scholar) with a Sufi background and English-Arabic-Urdu Translator.
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Q Quran is for compulsion in religion
Kafir means non-Muslim
The Quran is misogynistic
The Quran is exclusive.
The Quran is for a perpetual war
against the non-Muslims." If you want to quote me, please use my exact words. Your attempt to summarize my comments is very misleading. Let us not play such tricks with each other.
Why do you quote Prof Moosa when your strategy is
different from his? You want to leave the Quran aside and even insist and
The Quran is for compulsion in religion
The Quran is for a perpetual war
against the non-Muslims
And say that the “Progressive Muslims nevertheless
reject all of that and are for charting their own path keeping the Quran aside”.
You want to declare the Quran irrelevant for present times not to be taken
seriously. In simple language, you are an apostate, but you lack the integrity
to openly make known your intentions. You are an apostate calling upon other Muslims
also to apostatise but also a hypocrite who does not want to be open about it. Now
you will cry “abuse” saying I called you an apostate and a hypocrite, but telling
the truth is never abuse.
No wonder you do not like my articles because these
prove how wrong you are.
What GM sb is saying in effect is that irrespective of what I
have said, he believes that the Quran:
1. Uses undignified terms such
as Kafir for other people
2. Says that a woman’s testimony
is worth half that of a man
3. Is for compulsion in religion
4. Is not inclusive and excludes
all other faiths.
He quotes Moosa as follows:
Moosa asserts that progressive Islam doesn't mean changing
the Quran or changing Hadith, but is instead about having alternative
methodological approaches that are going to allow us to find different kinds of
answers from tradition, and answers that will be much more amenable to our
experiences and our way of life, be much more equitable.
Using the methodology outlined by Prof Moosa, can GM sb show us how without
changing the Quran or the Hadith, he will:
1. Remove the word kafir from the Quran
without changing the Quran
2. Show that it does not say a woman’s
testimony equals half that of a man while disagreeing with me simultaneously when
I say the same thing.
3. Show that the Quran never allows/allowed compulsion in religion while disagreeing with
me when I say so.
4. Show that Islam is inclusive of all other
faiths while disagreeing with me when I say so
“Human dignity is at the core of all Islam's messages. And if
knowledge does not deliver on human dignity, then that knowledge really is
questionable. So those kinds of interpretations of the past that talked about non-Muslims
in a particular way, that talked about women in a particular way, are no longer
dignified. That has to change.”
Give up your interpretations and take the correct meanings
and it changes automatically. If you take the correct meaning, the non-Muslims
are no longer the Kafirin (GM sb has however vociferously disagreed in the past
and insisted that they are the kafirin. He is the one who is against human
dignity), a woman’s testimony is not half that of a man, there is no compulsion
in religion is an absolute law, the deen of Islam comprises other religions as
So, where is the problem? The problem is with your interpretations.
Religion is not plasticine that can be shaped any which way as
one pleases. It is what it is and made clear by Allah. It suits people like GM
sb, prof Moosa and many of the Islamic scholars to ignore the clear meaning and
keep playing around with “interpretations”.
If I am wrong, it is easy to prove that. One only must come
up with a better alternate interpretation and defend it against what I have
said. If they cannot come up with an alternative interpretation that stands the
test of authenticity and conformity with the rest of the Quran better, then I
have succeeded in extracting the correct clear meaning. You have more than hundred
articles to try to prove me wrong. So, stop shadow boxing and get real or keep