By S. Arshad, New Age Islam
18 September 2021
Despite Clear Guidance on Every Issue, Muslims Are Sharply Divided On Collective and Individual Issue
1. Quran condemns sectarianism but Muslims are divided in 72 sects
2. Quran encourages science but Muslims are divided on inclusion of science in syllabus of madrasas.
3. Quran has clear guidance on purdah but Muslims are divided on the issue.
4. Quran has clear guidelines on Talaq but Muslims are divided on the process of Talaq.
5. Quran condemns terrorism but Muslims are divided on support to terrorist organizations.
The holy Quran is called Kitab-e-Mubeen, a clear book. It is called a book in which there is no room for doubt and confusion. God says that He will protect it from corruption till the Day of Judgment. The book exists today in exactly the same condition in which it was revealed fourteen hundred years ago. It consists of 114 short and long surahs (chapters) which cover all the issues and affairs that concern the individual and collective life of not only Muslims but also of the larger society.
Muslims take pride in the fact that the Quran, unlike all the other divine and revealed books, is present in its original form since it revelation and is unchanged and uncorrupted and so it provides clear guidance to them in every matter of importance in their social and personal life. They also say that since all the earlier divine books have become corrupted and omissions and commissions have been made in them by later day clerics, their followers are divided and confused over God’s ordainments in communal and social affairs. On the other hand they claim that the Quran has clear guidelines and so Muslims do not face any problems in the fulfilment of their religious duties. They claim that Muslims have a great advantage with the Quran.
But in reality the case is not so simple. In practice, Muslims have turned this advantage into a great disadvantage. Despite clear guidance and ordainments on almost every issue facing Muslims, they are sharply divided and have sharp differences on almost every social and individual issue. In fact, in some cases Muslims go against the ordainments of the Quran and the spirit of Islam. For example, the Quran condemns groupism and sectarianism but the Muslims are divided in 72 sectts. These differences are not theoretical but lead to Takfeer which further leads to violence and bloodshed among themselves. The Quran condemns violence and bloodshed without a just cause (in defence or as act of providing justice) but Muslims indulge in violence and killing of innocent people due to misinterpretation of verses.
The Quran has clear guidelines on the issue of divorce but Muslims are sharply divided on the issue of the process of proclaiming Talaq. In a recently conducted survey by PEW Research Centre, about 50% Muslims believe that the instant Triple Talaq is not valid while the other 50% Muslims say instant Triple Talaq should be followed. About 64% Muslim women say instant Triple Talaq should be banned. The Quran says At Talaqo Marratan (Divorce is twice) and the third should be pronounced after much thought because the third Talaq will permanently annual the marriage. But in contravention to this Quranic injunction, our ulema say Divorce is Thrice and instant leaving no room for thought or arbitration.
Another issue is the issue of Abrogation of Verses. This theory was conjured up two centuries after the demise of the prophet of Islam pbuh and has no basis in the Quran or Hadith but Islamic scholars are deeply divided on the issue. A section of Islamic scholars do not believe in the Theory of Abrogation while the other section believes that Abrogation Theory has basis in the Quran. Interestingly, this group also is divided on the number of verses that are believed to have been abrogated. Some believe that one hundred verses are abrogated while some believe that only five verses are abrogated.
Muslims are also divided on the issue of saying Ameen and Raf-e-Yadain. They are also divided on whether Salam should be recited while standing or while sitting.
Muslims are also divided on the use of microphone for Azan. The orthodox section of Muslims believe that Azan can only be called on microphone while the other section is of the opinion that microphone is not mandatory for Azan. This difference of opinion on Azan creates a lot of violence and bad blood in a multicultural society especially during the month of Ramadhan.
Science is the Achilles’ Heel for a large section of the religious section. While a section of Islamic scholars are of the opinion that the Quran encourages the study of science and so it should be included in the syllabus of madrasas, a majority of Islamic scholars are of the opinion that Islam does not encourage learning of science as it leads to materialism and takes Muslims away for spiritualism. Many scientists and philosophers were killed in the past. That’s why science has been kept away from madrasas.
The most important issue which has claimed much of the time of Islamic scholars (I fear using the word ulema for fear of backlash from their followers) is the issue of purdah. Many ulema, oops … Islamic scholars and researchers have spent tons of papers and days of reckoning to reach a consensus on this important issue but in vain. Some scholars believe that Muslim women should be given some freedom in terms of purdah while some scholars believe that women must wear full covering veil and the veil should have a small hole in front of only one eye. The Urdu poet Iqbal had said about them
Aah, becharon ke aasab pe aurat hai sawar
(Poor fellows are so much obsessed with women)
All this despite the fact that the holy Quran is a Kitab-e-Mubeen, a clear book which covers every issue big or small; everything wet or dry. All the Islamic scholars have not been able to reach a consensus on all these and many more issues like jihad and terrorism.
S. Arshad is a columnist with NewAgeIslam.com.
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