By Rashid Samnakay, New Age Islam
06 May 2017
In the political and religious debate the maxim to keep them separated is accepted as the golden rule. The fact that Islam in world view is also considered as a ‘religion’ it is said that the golden rule must apply to it too.
The “Islam”; that is the above religion per se, therefore must be treated and dealt with the rationality and logic that comes with politics, for politics is supposed to be a ‘science’. The only fallacy in that assumption is that politics IS considered as science and therefore a precise discipline. It is highly questionable assumption.
Similarly the assumption that Muslims who follow the above Islam-religion are a monolithic block and follow a common religion and therefore as a body of people, have one religion only, thus forming a large community block worthy of being called a Nation of Muslims! This assumption is also far from the truth and manifestly wrong.
Like all other religions this religion is divided not only in many denominations – some say seventy two of them-- but is acrimoniously split asunder into at least two main religions, each named after their appropriate adjectives as Shia and Sunni Islam.
However the Islam- adDeen, a faith system that was re-established by Muhammad, an Arab Messenger of God, as recently as fourteen centuries ago in Arabiya and had compiled a Book in Arabic called Quran (logically so because he was an Arab and his audience was Arabic speaking too); which ordains in its messages that any such divisions and factions among its followers is not acceptable and rejects them totally from its membership.
From the above – and from many other ordinances of the Book, it becomes abundantly clear that this Islam is NOT a religion for many reasons. Hence the maxim to keep adDeen separated from politics is invalid.
Suffice it to say that this Islam, which is not a religion is a comprehensive code of life to be put in practice like the traffic highway code, to be obeyed in its entirety by all road users to progress along ones journey safely and soundly without causing any harm to others road users, who must also obey the traffic code for the same reason.
In the context of the Quran, however much and for whatever reasons humans have interpreted the ordinances of the code that may differ, the spirit of the code for human progress through unity comes through loud and clear.
The overwhelming feature that makes it possible to conclude thus is the phrase; numerously repeated in the Book which in its Arabic form reads as “a’miluSSalihaati”-- Righteous beneficial action. Beneficial to humanity as a whole.
21:105 We have written in the Psalms (Zabur) after the reminder that righteous obedient servants I’baadiyalSSaliheen--shall inherit the earth.
Otherwise it is only: “Hum-Uraaoon”—They only perform it for self-promotion 107:6.
Spirituality, whether for self aggrandisement or for one’s peace of mind is just that. It is not counted as A’miluSSalihti. In the beneficial result-orientated deeds demanded by Quran, such fruitless spirituality has no place in its practical code of life; just as the religious charms and holy trinkets dangled in the cars and busses “to be seen” does not make a safe journey if the driver does not practically obey the code.
As politics is an integral part of social life and all actions of mankind are governed and fall within the ambit of the country’s laws that the elected politicians with the consent of the governed enact them, then those actions must be for the common good of all.
95:6- For sure, those who believe and commit righteous A’miluSSalihaati deeds, they are guaranteed beneficial reward… With which they will prosper and progress I life.
Neither the politicians nor the common citizens; religious or otherwise, are free from this obligation imposed on them by adDeen, the code. This Islam then is that system of codes: which binds all the people, men and women, in nationhood and therefore this Islam cannot be separated from politics.
We have the staged shows today of corrupt politicians, clergy and public figures manipulating (trading in false stories: 31-6) the Quranic ordinances to further their agendas and then protesting piously and with straight face when charged with the crime. “We have done nothing illegal or wrong” is the catch cry that is commonly heard in this respect. They differentiate between legality and morality of their deeds.
The same stalwart pillars of society then trot off to spiritual Holy lands to appease their consciences and return as purified souls, after taking a sip of or a dip in the holy waters of their Vaticans to start their sordid deeds all over again.
Iqbal therefore summed up precisely the whole issue in this couplet:
Jalal-E-Padshahi Ho Keh Jamhuri Tamashaa Ho,
Judaa Ho Deen Siyasat Say to Reh Jaati Hai Changezi!
Be it the razzmatazz of absolute monarchy or the staged-show of Democracy, when Deen is separated from politics what remains is Genghis-ism!
Clearly, adDeen is an essential part of politics and when replaced with religion, is when Genghis-ism sets in.
Laws are enacted and drafted by human beings. No law can be made so water tight that the crooked ingenuity of mankind for selfish gains cannot find loopholes in it. Therefore the governors and the governed must be guided by the morality and legality of common-good principles that are the datum of ethical behaviour. Else the savagery, cruelty, barbarity of animal instinct takes hold. No amount of spirituality clothed in the regalia, attire and pious stances can save a nation from ruin—that results eventually.
The ignorance of the foot soldiers, the rented crowds, recruited by the leaders; the political, religious and spiritually pretentious leaders, who are aware of what the Book ordains; yet manipulate their brain washed hirelings to commit acts of savagery that would be unfair to even attribute to the wild predatory animals.
This tragedy besets only the people determined not to use their thinking ability, that Quran, their Book they take their oaths upon extols them over and over again to apply and warns of consequences if ignored.
Because, this ‘thinking’ is hand-balled to the religious brigade who in selfishness and greed for power; stripped of any understanding of welfare and unity of humanity. They therefore ply their politics in the name of their religion(s). It is here that the maxim to separate religion and politics is valid and imperative and must be acted upon sooner rather than later.
Should not then all our efforts be directed first towards eliminating it through enlightenment and knowledge based education and so do away with the self-promoting fat-cats; that the Quran calls Mutrifeen!
Mutrifeen: the parasites that feed on society’s ignorance; those who are:
56:45, 46- For that they (Mutrifeen) desired to be indulged, before that, and persisted obstinately in wicked supremacy.
Therefore it is true to say that…Ahok in Jakarta Would Have Won the Gubernatorial Elections Fairly and Squarely and a Muslim majority country like Indonesia would have maintained its Islamic pluralistic image that it famously had once!
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