By Rashid Samnakay, New Age Islam
February 8, 2013
To endure and suffer a misfortune patiently is generally considered as a Religious virtue and hence is ‘nearness to God’. That is, to resign to one’s fate and let the course of nature take its time.
On one hand the element of taking an ‘action’ to avert or minimise the harmful effect of the misfortune does not play any part in this doctrine of holiness and nearness to God. Suffering and enduring without any struggle to shake off the misfortune is therefore ‘next to godliness’.
Thus if one is born in unfortunate situation for example, one is supposed to accept it as one’s fate because all types of such misfortunes are supposed to be predestined. It is just one’s luck of the draw, as the saying goes. God almighty imposes such conditions and to struggle against it is denying God’s Godliness in imposing willy-nily His wishes.
On the other hand, in terms of perpetrated oppression and violence, there is also the religious doctrine of struggle based on taking practical action, and in retaliating and reacting to wrong, irrespective of damage inflicted to others. In the Eye for an Eye and tooth for a tooth, the doctrine of proportionality does not arise.
This extremism is now applied on all facets of the industry of violence.
The terrible twins, The State sponsored hegemony for Political influence and economic gains, and the Reaction to it has spurned terrorism culture under the canopy of religious doctrine. In both these facets the middle-men, the arms dealers are the main beneficiary! However one of the twins may also be the middleman.
Both sides of this industry do not take into consideration that violence begets violence. The historic example is that the seeds of WWII were sown in the armistice of WWI by the conditions imposed on the defeated nation of Germany. The victors expected that the vanquished being a Christian country like themselves will ‘turn the other cheek’ and patiently accept the terms. However that did not happen.
Among Muslims the more politically astute preachers cite the example of countries which were devastated after the War but have bounced back within a short span of few decades as economic powers and as advanced nations because, it is said they suffered and endured patiently the calamities of two atom bombs, and tons of incendiaries drops.
However this was not so as the world knows well enough. The resolute and action-based character of the nation, Japan for example did not withdraw in the back quarters of Buddhist and Taoist monasteries.
The chivalrous struggle of over two decades and “endurance’’ of Vietnamese against very heavy odds is never referred to as an example.
In essence it can be stated that the seeds of modern conflicts, particularly in the Muslim world, were also sown at the end of WWII by design. A doctrine of imposing the victors’ “homogeneity” and now “globalisation”; on every human activity in the world; perhaps emulating the ancient historic marauding Alexandrian equalising doctrine of the world has spurred them on.
To react to this doctrine, there are two interpretations among Muslims in use of-- “God is with those who endure patiently”. The Churches and their hierarchy; in extolling the virtue of being saabir -the one who patiently goes on suffering “wallaAhu ma’ssabireen” 2-249 & 8-66- for this is said to be according to the Book Quran they believe in.
It is explained that prayers and God’s worship is the only remedy for the condition and in doing so one gets its reward in the hereafter. So, good Muslims should withdraw to their mosques and monasteries in such situations.
In the other quarters it is argued that sabr- is action based struggle to free oneself; of misfortune, oppression and grievances, and it calls for violent action; the so called ‘sword’ bearing; now Kalashnikov carrying and suicide-jackets wearing jihad. Against one and all, without distinction of innocent, friends and foes, as it is under the banner of one or other religion. “The collateral damage” is an accepted part of that ideology; religiously and politically!
But in that very Book of belief, endurance-sabr has an element of action and struggle, counter balanced with sanctity of life. That it is maximum performance under a given condition, continued over extended time if required, to change 13-11 the condition positively. That is, perseverance with total faith in nature’s laws to reward according to just and positive effort and action that one puts in to remedy the situation. This is elaborated in many places.
To an ordinary person familiar with Quran’s doctrine of good for goodness sake and its emphases on ‘righteous action’ in every facet of human life has no problem accepting the crux of this argument. For example a simple verse:
53-39 -that mankind can achieve nothing except what it strives for.
That is, it is important to commit oneself to just and positive action in order to achieve the desired reaction, remembering that every action good or bad has a proportionate reaction.
In conjunction with that it is that firm commitment -a’zam -that is required as an essential element 3-159- then, when you have made a firm commitment, put your trust in God’s laws (of action and reaction) in nature.
This then is far from either the piety ridden “saintly surrender” that some priests, even today proclaim from the pulpits and websites as being fate, that must be resigned to; or the unjust, fanatical and rage reaction and politically driven, irrespective of damage -- brother kill brother—, indiscriminately Innocent, unarmed, men, women and children; completely contrary to the teachings of the Book. Negating the very essence of the doctrine of “sabr”.
This is a ploy on the part of all the parties, either by design or innocence; more probably by design; to lull their followers into false beliefs in order to perpetuate the violent-industry. 2-11 When it is said to them: “make not mischief on earth “they say “ But we are but only peace makers”.
As a result the Muslim youth in particular under their spell, is regressing day by day where today it is almost at the point of following the law of their ‘religious jungle’ or correctly the promise of word-perfect-picture of Jannah-the heavenly garden!
However, the Book does not brook the doctrine of the Biblical ‘Just war’ enacted to justify the Crusades. Justice and War, the two words are contradictory terms and cannot sit together comfortably in any natural law.
It certainly begs the question as to what then is the difference between States Sponsored Violence, particularly the one sided kind of today’s cowardly unmanned Drones and its reaction by those on whom this violence from un-breach able schism is meted?
It is not only a sixty four thousand dollar question but some trillions of dollar enigma, and only those who have that sort of dough to spend and are callous enough to expend millions of lives and destroy countries for their cause and strategy can answer, if at all.
This is a travesty of ignorance. The Muslim nation as a whole has lost the ability to distinguish, between friends and particularly the hypocrites- the Munafiqoon; the worst of them.
They are the worst because they pose as friends but are the enemies within. An open enemy is said to be preferable to a hypocrite, who “…enjoin evil and forbid what is just…9-67”!
If the learned people wish to save the youth, it is essential to take urgent action to wean them away from ‘the-warped’ doctrinal knowledge and into mainstream education and produce, according to the Book those “…among His servants who have Knowledge 35-28”. Real knowledge, so that they understand “… persevere in sabr –to attain a good result-- until Gods laws decide between us,…”
This leads to an obvious observation!
It is surely the obligation of the government which many of the Muslim States have abrogated and let ‘others’ take over this burden which as per 17-15’, ‘a burden no other one can carry. Thus there are now two or even three streams of learning.
The first one is what there is left of the so called State schools. The second is the Religious schools-cum-suicide-bomber-factories and the third, perhaps equally lethal if not more so for any sovereign self-respecting nation to accept; the private education-money-making-industry mainly run by foreign business enterprises. They sharpen their tools against the host country for their own countries’ and vested interests- one of the main qualities of hypocrites.
Any wonder that with this triple jeopardy the Muslim world is being destroyed with from inside, outside and from the ground as well as from the skies above! If this situation is accepted by them as their warped doctrine of strategy, sabr and jihad, then it is getting just what they deserve; unless of course they learn to distinguish between friends and hypocrites and also implement “the change” as per the oft quoted and well known13-11 of the Book!