Red, White and Black


The Hajj Sermon
31 December, 2006, 9:30 pm
Filed under: general, Islam, Politics

I ended up listening to the Hajj sermon a few days ago and a couple of points caught my attention. Speaking to the congregation of believers on Hajj day, the Saudi state-appointed Mufti claimed:

…that the slogans of enlightened moderation and socialism were completely opposed to Islam and there was no place for sectarianism in the Deen. He said the cause of downfall of Muslims was distraction from their Deen and that was why the enemies of Islam were uniting against them. He added that Muslim governments should make efforts to unite against the enemies of Islam. The Mufti said that mujahideen in Afghanistan, Iraq and other parts of Muslim world should protect the rights of their brethren like they do for the House of God.

So while the Mufti made some politically correct noises like emphasising the need for unity, speaking out against the terrorism perpetrated in the name of Islam and denouncing sectarianism. But for the rest of it – the political part of the sermon, he resorted to the same old schizophrenic rhetoric that has become the custom of the religious Right in the Muslim world.

First of all, he warned the Muslims against the efforts of the enemies of Islam to create divisions in the Muslim world. I don’t understand this mindset. Why must the “enemies” of Islam be blamed for the problems that Muslim countries have with each other? The dream of a unified Muslim ummah does not take off due to internal differences within in the Ummah. The OIC is a paper tiger for all to see. The fact of life is that each country today has to work within it’s own national interests and those interests often do collide. Differences and grievances between Muslim sates result consequently. The “enemies” of Islam have to do very little to further those grievances. So why blame them? They are just playing on your own weakness. But more importantly, why does the Mufti choose to highlight such evil schemes in his Hajj sermon? Does he not realise that he is inadvertently furthering an us-vs-them divide in an highly polarised world? He could have used to very opportunity to call for a cross-civilization dialogue. He could have emphasised the need to reconcile differences both within the Muslim community and outside. But he didn’t. He resorted to rhetoric instead.

Secondly, the Mufti attacks “enlightened moderation” and socialism. Let’s disassociate enlightened moderation from Musharraf and recast it as a progressive version of Islam. Why is the Mufti against ijetihad and progressive thinking in the Islamic world? Primarily because it would weaken the very structures of what has become Islam’s “Church” today. Just think of the harm people like Javed Ghamidi would do to the Wahabism of Saudi Arabia and it becomes apparent then why a Saudi-state appointed Mufti would warn Muslims against that particular evil. It also points to another trait that characterizes the modern Muslim world – an aversion to reformist thought and reinterpretation of the scriptures. The religious Right is scared of any development that would threaten their authority and push them off their coveted pedestal. Therefore, their favourite ploy is to denounce all reformists and progressive as heretics in an attempt to delegitimise them.

Last of all, he wants mujahideen from all over the world to protect the rights of the Muslims. It is interesting because he is specifically referring to Afghanistan and Iraq. In both these countries, the only mujahideen are the likes of the Taliban, Al-Qaeda and various sectarian groups of Iraq. Furthermore, in both the countries Islam is not under attack but the countries are – and that too because of strategic reasons. So why did the Mufti choose to link those countries to Jihad? Is he really denouncing the terrorists who wage wars in the name of Islam or is he covertly supporting the likes of the Taliban? What sort of message does the Mufti want to send out?

The reason I chose to highlight these three points in the annual Hajj sermon was to draw attention to two things:

a) The remarkable divergence of the the sermon from the message of the Last Sermon by the Prophet. Of course, the Mufti was not required to match the excellence of the Last Sermon, but the least he could have done was to highlight similar themes. He could have reminded the assembled to be honest in their dealings, not to lie or to cheat and remember to treat others with equality. He could have emphasised the equality of all mankind, which is the defining feature of the Hajj congregation. What he needed to do was remind those assembled of the very basics of humanity, which would enable them to be better humans and better Muslims too.

b) The three points that I highlighted are also the defining factors of all that is wrong with Muslim societies today. Across the Muslim world, foreign enemies are blamed for the ills of the societies. The leaders gloss over their own deficiencies and redirect the anger of the masses to an external source. The remove any space for self introspection within those societies by identifying an external enemy. Maybe, this new year the Muslim world will take the chance to think about what are the real causes of the sickness of our societies. Similarly, across the Muslim world independent rational thought is discouraged. The common man is not supposed to try and understand the word of God on his own – he is supposed to go a higher authority to interpret it for him. And thus ensues a battle for the control over the monopoly of religion. It is either the state which takes on this “duty” or the clergy of the country. Either way, it ensures the loyalty of the masses to the party. Similarly, a common man is made to think that the Taliban or the likes of OBL are the saviours of Islam. Wrong wrong impression.

When are these issues going to be addressed by mainstream Muslim society? Another year will pass by with the Muslim world immersed in the same stupor and decay. But here is, hoping to a better future – a better year for all of the Muslim world and beyond.

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25 Comments so far
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Good post. It is a fallacy to assume others responsible for our woes. If they west is plotting against Islam, then what counter-measures we have taken? Ironically the same clergy was in honeymoon with the west and US against communism. I wonder when we take our problems into account rather to squarely shifting the blame on the west.

Comment by manzoor

ur right about this. people do not seem to understand many of the instructions of Allah and the Prophet (peace be upon him). it is within their instructions that each muslim, man and women, has to seek maximum knowledge and wisdom, for the betterment of everyone, and this is mandatory. no ifs and buts. i do not understand why the so called protectors of our religion then keep people away from it.

Comment by MystaKool

Ameen, to the last statement!!!

Comment by Afzaal

Salamalikum,

There is so much wrong with this article that I don’t think I can do justice to myself by replying to all of the mis-statements. But, look at this double standard of you and people who usually support views like this. You rebutted the mufti and represented Rasoolullah’s (saw) last sermon to support your view. Since it suits your taste you’re quick to draw upon “the scriptures”, as you say it. Now, if I bring many more ahadeeth that soundly refute your ideology, then what will you do? You will start to make noise about it being old, not “progressive”, even cast doubt on them and call them unreliable. And would want to quickly “reinterpret” them.

This is what you’ll call ijtihaad—reinterpret Islam according to one’s own whims and desires. And, of course any knowledgeable person can tell you that this is not ijtihaad; rather, it’s playing with Islam. So, don’t cry about muftis and other scholars begin against ijtihaad. They aren’t against the actual sound ijtihaad that’s based in knowledge AND sincerity, which is done by scholars who have spent all their lives in learning and practicing this deen. They are against the ideology that you’re spreading, and then calling it ijtihaad.

Comment by Ibrahim

Ibrahim, how about getting into the tedious business of pointing out the mis-statements? And what double standards really? Are you only allowed to refer to the Prophet’s sermon if you are a believer in the conservative school of thought? And otherwise it becomes a hypocritical act? That’s what you are implying!

Are you just opposed to liberal Islamic movements? It certainly seems so. What you call playing with Islam is not playing with Islam! It is an honest attempt to understand religion. Why do you term it insincere? Because it does not conform to your world view? So you start doubting the intentions of the people and term them insincere! Bravo!

I am sorry there is no nefarious ideology being furthered here! But if it threatens traditional thought, of course, it will be termed so.

Comment by ayesha

Salamalikum,

It will take a lot of time, and I don’t have much time right now. But, I read Adnan’s comments on this article in some other blog, and I was going to post his comments here, but it seems like you’ve already read them, so no point in reproducing them here, and I don’t think I can add more value to it.

“Are you only allowed to refer to the Prophet’s sermon if you are a believer in the conservative school of thought?”

That’s my point! If you’re to refer to Prophet’s ahadeeth, then you should conform to all of them regardless of whether it suits your taste or not, which I don’t think people holding liberal views would do because then their views will be easily refuted. Secondly, you misunderstood my response. I wasn’t just talking about referring to Prophet’s sermon only. I was talking about referring to all his authentic ahadeeth. Yes, I’m not implying but rather explicitly saying that it’s hypocritical of someone to pick and choose Rasoolullah’s (saw) ahadeeth according to their taste.

“Are you just opposed to liberal Islamic movements? It certainly seems so. What you call playing with Islam is not playing with Islam! It is an honest attempt to understand religion. Why do you term it insincere? Because it does not conform to your world view? So you start doubting the intentions of the people and term them insincere! Bravo!”

Ok, maybe my tone was a little harsh, and I’m sorry about it, and my comment was in part general. Indeed, I don’t know your intentions but there’s a lot of insincerity involved with many people upholding such views. Of course, I’m against “liberal Islamic movements” because there’s no such thing. Either one sticks to all of Quran and Sunnah or one doesn’t. Nobody gets to pick and choose and reinterpret. It might be an honest attempt on your part to understand this religion and you might not intend to, but it’s playing with the religion—pick and choose doesn’t work.

“I am sorry there is no nefarious ideology being furthered here! But if it threatens traditional thought, of course, it will be termed so.”

Not intentionally, sure. But, it’s an ideology that you’re promoting—that’s for sure.

Comment by Ibrahim

Ibrahim,

The most beautiful thing about a religion like Islam is that it is not absolutist! In the Quran, Allah prodes man again and again to think and to read! Man has the unique capacity of the intellect and Allah miyan has given him the right to make an attempt to understand religion on it’s own merit by making use of that gift. So, if you are aware of the content of the modernist and liberal Muslim liberal thought, you would realise that it is not about picking and choosing the hadiths that you like – but it is about understanding religion by making use of your intellect and very basic principles of humanism. Modern/liberal Muslim thought is not an artifact of our times alone, but the process began over a century ago with the likes of Afghani and Iqbal. It has strong origins. I would actually ask you to go back to the thought of these philosophers and theologists and then come back and argue that they just want to reinterpret religion to rid away of things that they don’t like. It doesn’t work like that. These guys don’t respect the Quran and Hadith any less than you do – it’s just a difference of perspectives and that too within the boundaries allowed by God Himself.

Secondly, the prime source of Islam is the Quran – the hadith literature is secondary because of the fact that its authenticity was not guaranteed by Allah. The Ahadith came down to us through efforts of man and man is fallible – both due to error and due to ulterior motives. So only those ahadees are rejected which come in contradiction with the principles laid out in the Quran itself – it is not what you call selective choosing and picking.

Thirdly, there is another thing. The conservative school of thought is again based upon the interpretation of the Quran and the Hadith literature by a certain group of men. So if one disagrees with the conservative school of thought, it does not mean that one is disagreeing with the Quran or the Hadith, but it just means that one not does agree with interpretation of both! And one would be very much within right to do so, because that understanding comes from men – it is God’s word translated through their eyes. I hope you are able to recognise the difference. : ) [Incidentally, when I talk of Islam’s Church, this is what I specifically mean – our society’s over-reliance on the interpretation of God’s word by a set of theologians than their seeking refuge in the word itself. And because of expansive spread of this tendency, the authority of the traditional clergy has become institutionalised and entrenched.]

Fourthly, there are modern/liberal Muslim thoughts and ideologues. You just need to review that literature that is available on it all. They are not just being invented from thin air by the likes of myself. : )

Comment by ayesha

Actually I had to reply ayesha on her own blog but I was unable to access wordpress yesterday.

Ayesha had made similar post on shirazi’s blog as well and I have replied her baseless,fictitious claims. Read here

http://www.inblogs.net/sajshirazi/2007/01/hajj-sermon.html

or if it doesn’t open then click here

Comment by Adnan Siddiqi

Actually I wana see how ayesha makes a difference between MODERN ISLAM and OLD[Conservative] ISLAM and want to learn what does she[others] mean by that. I don’t expect her to answer my other lengthy answer but this is something she has to clear to others who are not “Aware of” modern ideologies which she says are “Islamic”. Lets see how does it go 🙂

Comment by Adnan Siddiqi

Adnan, please spare me the sarcasm will you?

And since you are so fond of providing links to Wiki to supplement my weak knowledge base, I will just return the favor: Modern Muslim Thouhgt for you and not waste my breath on it.

I wonder if you are even aware of the thought of Afghani, Abduh, Iqbal, Nasr, Mulla Saddra and Sadr? But sure.

Comment by ayesha

there is no sarcasm and No I am not fond of Wiki. I /you /anyone could provide any link while arguing/dicussing.

FYI, the link you gave was already visited by me and not new and I can see few “familiar” names like Modudi,Iqbal etc. I arleady mentioned on shirazi’s blog about thinking of Modudi Sahib and Ahsan Eslahi sahib. So your link is not giving any dimention to your discussion.

You advised me to “learn someting about ghamdi befrore going against him” and I already dared to explained his “school of thought”. I am one of those who don’t go for names, Its very stupid. Ghamdi,Moududi,Iqbal or even Taqi Usmani[which I personally consider very learned person] such names can’t be guranteed to be 100% RIGHT all the time. I am not one of those who prefer to worship a celebrity rather grasping his knowledge. It’s like an illetrate woman belives in a Makhdoom or peer more than a God. So by referring names like Modudi, Sadr, etc etc doesn’t put any weight in your statment therefore I would stick on my question. wht is Modern Islam or Traditional Islam. Was Muhammad[SAW] the founder of some odd/ancient/conservative Islam which pissed guys like you mentioned that they got ready to bring reforms in religion? were companions of Muhammad[saw] laid the foundation of Talibanization because they had beard and used to wear old clothes.

Kindly educate me[your readers] on this matter then we move on.

Comment by Adnan Siddiqi


Afghani, Abduh, Iqbal, Nasr, Mulla Saddra and Sadr?

No I am not! why would I lie but it seems you are. Take advantage of this opportunity and explain to your readers that why Islam of these guys were better or enhanced than Islam given by Muhammad[SAW] . Yes Do elaborate it!

Comment by Adnan Siddiqi

Salamalikum,

I wanted to answer you in sequence but your second paragraph caught my attention. The very basic fact that you’re doubting the authenticity of ahadeeth points to the fact that liberal views contradict the traditional texts and thus there’s a need to get away from ahadeeth. First, you say that nobody is picking and choosing, but then you proceed to claim unreliability of hadeeth. In fact, do you know there’s a name for such a sect (of people who casts doubt on ahadeeth) and only want to refer to Quran? They’are called ‘Quranic Sect’.

“the prime source of Islam is the Quran”
Very wrong statement. Even a person like Mush, wrong and deceitfully, says that no law will be made against Quran and Sunnah (hadeeth). Yes, men are not without fault and some have brought ahadeeth which have been classified as weak by hadeeth scholars and nobody takes such a hadeeth as evidence to prove something. Allah subhanuataala has promised to preserve this religion so you don’t think He has the power to get men you’ll preserve the authentic traditions of Rasoolullah (saw) and who would correctly point out weak ahadeeth? Do you pray? Do you believe in five daily prayers? (these are rhetorical questions and I’m not seeking a reply) Can you find me in Quran where it says how to pray a namaz and how many times. This all comes from ahadeeth. So, your point about unreliability of ahadeeth has no basis. Otherwise, you can throw out most of the shariat out of the window, and that’s why Quranic sect want to only refer to Quran because this relives them from many a duties.

Also, in Quran in many a places Allah say “wa ‘ata’iAllaha war-rasool”. In Urdu, “Allah aur uskay rasool ki ‘ataat karo”. In English, “Be obedient to Allah and His messenger.” How could one follow this advice of Allah in Quran if one casts doubt on ahadeeth and say that matter of hadeeth is an unreliable one? I refer you to a specific ayat of Quran (Ayat 36, Surah 33, Surah Ahzab): The English translation (of Yusuf Ali, for reference) is: “It is not fitting for a Believer, man or woman, when a matter has been decided by Allah and HIS MESSENGER to have any option about their decision: if any one disobeys Allah and HIS MESSENGER, he is indeed on a clearly wrong Path.” I capitalized ‘His messenger’ for emphasis. Please read this ayat several times. How could one follow this command of Allah if one doesn’t know about matters that have “been decided by…His messenger”?

“So only those ahadees are rejected which come in contradiction with the principles laid out in the Quran itself – it is not what you call selective choosing and picking”

I don’t want to be rude, but this is really a wrong statement on two counts. First, from the perspective of usul al-fiqh or usul al-hadeeth. But, let me not get into it. The second, almost all the views by your liberal/modern “Islamic intellectuals” don’t support the qualification (even if we take it as true for argument’s sake) you put that “only those ahadees are rejected which come in contradiction with the principles laid out in the Quran itself”. This qualification is routinely breached. Either you are ignorant of ahadeeth or literature of these modernist or you’re mis-representing the facts.

“Man has the unique capacity of the intellect and Allah miyan has given him the right to make an attempt to understand religion on it’s own merit by making use of that gift”

Even only by looking at the above verse or part of verses you can see that Allah commands us to follow Allah through Quran and His messenger, which means through authentic ahadeeth. “Men” are not allowed to apply their different level of intellect to derive whatever seems right to them. Even ijithaad by real scholars is done under strict limits within that of Quran and Sunnah.

This conservative view that you refer to, where did it originate? The ahadeeth and faqhi books were written when? This conservative perspective comes from Sahaba (companions of Rasoolullah) and then the generation that followed them (ta’been) and then the generation them (ta’ba ta’been). All these three generations are collectively known as salaf us Saliheen (the pious predecessors). And, there is very famous hadeeth that a sahabi asked Rasoolullah what’s the best generation (in terms of practicing Islam) and he said: “The best of mankind are my generation (or my century), then those who come after them, then those who come after them. Then there will come a people who will not care if their testimony comes before their oath or vice versa (i.e., they will not take such matter seriously).”

And, I know you’ll say I don’t buy this because I think ahadeeth are unreliable, and if you say so, then it just proves my point: By casting doubt on hadeeth, Islam can be put in one’s pocket and played with in whatever manner possible. But, I firmly believe in ahadeeth so I’ll use this to make my point. So, the conservative thought comes from the pious predecessors who Rasoolullah himself has praised. So, any point of view that contradicts “old-school” or conservative is not within the true spirit of Islam. Can you really compare today’s modernist with Sahaba and other Islamic scholars such as Hasan Al-Basri, Imam Abu Hanifah, Imam Malik, Imam Shafi’, Imam Ahmed, Imam Bukhair, Imam Muslim, Imam Tirmidhi and many, many others. By Allah, NO WAY.

The ijithaad that you want to use and promote and what modernists do is outside the limits of Islam. They use an Islamic concept such as ijtihaad to promote secularist ideas? Does that make sense? So people like Javed Ghimdi use “ijtihaad” to say that ‘Isra and Miraaj was just a dream and Rasoolullah never went to Jerusalem and up to Heavens when Quran and ahadeeth point against it. They use “ijtihaad” to say that certain rules, including hadd punishment, only were for the time of Rasoolullah, when the Quran and Sunnah points against it. Is this what you call ijtihaad? Sister Ayesha, this is not ijithaad. Rather, it’s redefining Islam behind the mask of fake ijtihaad and wrong use of one’s intellect. It’s using “ijtihaad” to change and extend the farthest limits of Islam.

“So, if you are aware of the content of the modernist and liberal Muslim liberal thought, you would realise that it is not about picking and choosing the hadiths that you like – but it is about understanding religion by making use of your intellect and very basic principles of humanism.”

Don’t just talk, look at the works of your modernists and liberal writers. For example, you think Javed Ghimdi and his likes are not picking and choosing. If you say they don’t, then I don’t think much of what I have written will make sense to you because anyone can tell you that they’re ignoring parts of Quran and ahadeeth. I read this “very basic principles of humanism” and I knew exactly where you coming from and I wasn’t a bit surprised. If we use this “very basic principles of humanism”, then all religion should be about the same. No religion contradicts basic humanism. And modernist/liberals do say that—find common ground between religions. It doesn’t work like that. In Quran, Allah says that this religion is revealed on human fitrah (human nature). So, do you think for all these 1500 years Allah allowed His religion to be defined differently than what He wanted? Of course not! It’s only in last 100 or so years that people are trying to “bring” Islam according to “basic humanism”. What the modernists want is to use this “humanism” to make the religion vague like Christainity and limit-less so people can define what humanism is and follow it. That’s why they want to do away most of the laws of Islam. If you want, I can get a count of the laws that have been classified as “not right”. Islam is a way of life and the way is defind by rules and regulations. Once you take out or reduce rules and regulations, there’s nothing left—Islam will be left only in name just as Christianity.

“Modern/liberal Muslim thought is not an artifact of our times alone, but the process began over a century ago with the likes of Afghani and Iqbal. It has strong origins.”

This response is already getting pretty long so I’ll briefly say something and then may be discuss later. First take Iqbal: Have you read Iqbal poetyr in Urdu or Farsi? Not English translation. If so, you’ll agree that he wasn’t the kind of modernist like today’s. Yes, Iqbal asked for ijithaad but not to extend the limits of the religion. He never advocated to do away laws of Islam. Let’s look at his actions. He urged and invited Moulana Moudoudi to come to Lahore (and that’s why Moudoudi moved there) because Iqbal admired Moudoudi. I don’t agree with a lot of things of Moudoudi but definitely Moudoudi wasn’t a “modernist”. Moudoudi will be called a strict conservative by the likes of you. Read his books “Purda”, his tafseer “Tafheemul Quran”, Khutabat: Fundamentals of Islam, Towards Understanding Islam, etc. If you do read them, you’ll find out he’s no modernist and his ijtihaad’s definition is not what you think. Hence, Iqbal’s definition of Ijithaad is similar and he didn’t want to do away with laws of Islam (i.e. Javed Ghimdi). There is a reason Ghmidi ran away from Moudoudi and he would have run away from Iqbal also. Moreover, Iqbal tried to convice Al-Azhar to start a similar university in the subcontinent. You think Javed Ghimdi will go for a university like that today? No way!

More importantly, you’ve Jamaludeen Afghani all wrong. I know his ideas very well and especially his Syrian student Rashid Rida. What Afghani is talking about is not doing what’s is known in Islam as “taqleed” (blind following). And this is what taqleed means (and I challenge you to prove me wrong): A Hanafi (someone that follows Hanafi fiqh rulings) sticks to a particular ruling even after he/she finds out that the ruling in maybe Malaki fiqh or Shafi fiqh or Hanbali fiqh is more closer to Quran and Sunnah. So, this is what al-Afghani is saying when he talks about ijtihaad. He’s not talking about people making their own new decisions. Here you might say, ‘look, you yourself admitted that Imam Abu Hanifah got a ruling wrong’. Of course, he did and I concurred with you earlier that scholars do make mistakes. But, what you’ve to look at that other scholars (that you would deem old and conservative) differed and corrected it. And ALL REMAINED within the strict limits of ijtihaad and applied Quran and known Sunnah to their best abilities. At the four imam’s time not all the ahadeeth were collected neately as it’s today so they might have made ruling because they didn’t know about a hadeeth. But, today that excuse goes away. But all of these people’s manhaj (methodology) was the same: Look at Quran and Sunnah and stick to it without injecting their own intellect and reinterpretation. The methodology of today’s modernists/liberals is quite different: Look at Quran and Sunnah, critically analyze it, bring it according to our ‘understanding of principles of humanism’ and then make rulings about Islam. That’s why using such a methodology, people like Ghimidi and such end up with such bogus conclusions.

Plus, several of Afghani’s and Rashid Rida’s ideas were rejected at that time and are rejected today by scholars who have deep knowledge and spent their whole lives for the sake of Islam. For example, Afghani promoted overthrow of governments and revolution and rioting and this isn’t something from Islam. May be you want to read about criticism laid upon Iqbal by scholars for writing shikwa and jawab-e-shikwa. So, first you’ve got ideas of both Iqbal and Afghani wrong, and secondly, some of their ideas that you might depend on are not in line with Islamic beliefs and methodology.

“These guys don’t respect the Quran and Hadith any less than you do – it’s just a difference of perspectives and that too within the boundaries allowed by God Himself”

Let’s just put people’s intentions on the side. One can say all they want how they adhere to Quran and Sunnah. But, it’s their literature and actions that speak louder. Respect of Quran and Hadith is not just saying that one respects them. The respect comes from adhereing to it and not putting your own reinterpretation on them.

“Thirdly, there is another thing. The conservative school of thought is again based upon the interpretation of the Quran and the Hadith literature by a certain group of men. So if one disagrees with the conservative school of thought, it does not mean that one is disagreeing with the Quran or the Hadith, but it just means that one not does agree with interpretation of both! And one would be very much within right to do so, because that understanding comes from men – it is God’s word translated through their eyes. I hope you are able to recognise the difference. : ) [Incidentally, when I talk of Islam’s Church, this is what I specifically mean – our society’s over-reliance on the interpretation of God’s word by a set of theologians than their seeking refuge in the word itself. And because of expansive spread of this tendency, the authority of the traditional clergy has become institutionalised and entrenched.]”

I hope what I’ve said above answers this. Interpertation of today’s modernists and the Sahaba and salaf us saliheen and the traditional scholars who learn from their teachings is billion light years away and has no comparison. Interpertation in Islamic dialogue is known as “ta’weel”. You might want to read about how the scholars restrict ta’weel! And, Allah knows best. May Allah guide us all.

Comment by Ibrahim

“I wonder if you are even aware of the thought of Afghani, Abduh, Iqbal, Nasr, Mulla Saddra and Sadr?”

Since my above post is long I just want you to say I’ve read most of these and please read my response above carefully. Afghani, Abduh and Iqbal’s ideas are more or less what Moulana Moudoudi preached and today’s modernist and liberals like you (Ghimdi, etc.) run away from this.

Comment by Ibrahim

@ Ibrahim:

You’ve given me a lot to respond to. But give me a little time and I will get back to you with a comprehensive response – just have a lot of work to get done over the next few days. Will get back to you asap.

Comment by ayesha

Without hoping to sound condescending, I have a sympathy for you. You are perhaps trying to break the shackles and get away from the status quo by proposing a path to moderation, which necessitates change. However, as Mr. Ibrahim has rightly pointed out that you are only seeing part of the picture and not the whole picture. The picture you are seeing is rosy, has a reflection of egalitarianism, justice, message of peace etc. What you are not really seeing, or you may not have known is that there is another dimension to it. The picture you see has been painted on the canvas of your mind everyday, so much so that its color has deeply been imbued in your subconscious.

What you detest or dislike about ‘extremist’ Muslims, you consider a mutation, an outlier, an unrepresentative, biased and prejudiced view. I feel that you have been really duped by the propaganda you’ve been hearing over your lifetime. I therefore beseech you to pay close attention to what Mr. Ibrahim has to say. Not because he and I entertain similar notions about Islam, but because he is really trying hard, albeit sub-consciously, to show you that many of Islam’s facets are not in your current knowledge. I would like to encourage you to at least entertain for a brief period, this idea that there may exist several ahadith, ayah, contrary to your view of Islam. If you are ready to accept this challenge, only then you can seek, whether there is some truth in the claims made by various muftis and muslim scholars, which on the surface sounds misogynistic, violent, medieval etc.

I have respect for you, because you have a moral conscience independent of the various teachings promoted by current day muslim scholars. You can decide for yourself, what is morally right or wrong, and unintentionally you are doing cherry picking the sort of ideas you like, in Quran or Hadith.

You have read / quoted the last sermon, yet you are probably not aware that in many ahadith, quite the contrary has been practiced / preached.

You have read /quoted that God gives you freedom to make you think and question, yet you are probably not aware that in the same scripture God has overwhelmed non-believers with dulges, plagues and various other calamities.

Oh and by the way, I have not read all these people that Mr. Ibrahim mentioned, but I have read Iqbal and to some extent Moudoudi. I would like to comment that even though I have some disagreement with certain statements of Iqbal, where he is not really explaining based on any reason but merely appealing to authority, yet he has devoted a whole chapter on his book ‘Reconstruction of Religious Thought is Islam’ to modify centuries old Islamic injunctions and has tried, I would say in all sincerity to convince Mullahs and Muftis that it is indeed feasible within the Islamic Framework to introduce reformation.

I do not agree with Mr. Ibrahim that Moudoudi and Iqbal’s ideas are more or less similar. They are poles apart. Moudoudi is an apologist at best and a standard conservative Muslim Scholar in general sense and unlike you derives all his morality based on scriptures.

I wish you good luck in your endeavour. What you are trying to do is noble, but I am afraid, you really do not know the whole picture.

Regards…

Comment by Farhan

Brother Ibrahim!

An intresting note but I am afraid that there are few points which I don’t agree[with all respect]. Your points are in ITALIC fonts.


and that’s why Quranic sect want to only refer to Quran because this relives them from many a duties

I disagree. IMO, Hadeeth doesn’t impose something extra or different than Quran. Even if someone honestly follow Quran only then he would get surprised that quran and hadiths are not entirely different things. Yes Quran doesn’t give procedure of Salat but yes Quran talks about Fajr,Zohar,asar,Isha and even Thajud[with name]. Quran gives glad tidings to those who go masjids and curse to those who don’t go masjid. This is not the place to quote concerned verses neither I have such intention.


A Hanafi (someone that follows Hanafi fiqh rulings) sticks to a particular ruling even after he/she finds out that the ruling in maybe Malaki fiqh or Shafi fiqh or Hanbali fiqh is more closer to Quran and Sunnah

Then he’s not a genuine Hanafi/Malaki or Hambli. All four Imamas had clearly instructed that if someone finds anything against Quran and Sunna in their writings then He MUST reject that particular piece by any of them. Neither any of Imam had preached to reject other and accept them. All of them made their research in parallel and had no intention to refute each others. In short, none of them gave themselves preference over Quran and Sunnah.


He never advocated to do away laws of Islam.

This is not a disagreement, I am just adding something which was said by iqbal


Ki Muhammad[saw] se Wafa tu Hum teray hain
Ye jahan cheez hay kia,Loh-o-qalam teray hain

which I think Iqbal wrote after reading Quranic verses “Obey God,Obey His Messenger[saw]”. and One can do Wafa with Prophet[saw] only if he obeys Him[saw] and you obey Him[saw] by following Sunnah.

I would like to recommend a book “Iqbal aur Quran” by Dr.Ghulam Mustafa Khan in which he explained which verse Iqbal took from Quran to say shairs

Comment by Adnan Siddiqi

Salamalikum,

Farhan: I agree that Moudoudi is what is called today hardcore “conservative” unlike Iqbal. I guess what I was trying to say is that Iqbal is closer to Moudoudi than today’s modernists as I think Ayesha is implying.

Adnan: I agree that definitely Quran and Hadeeth complement each other and are the same, and I beseech Allah for His mercy if I’m even implying anything else. You’re right Allah swears to the time of Fajr, Asr, etc. But, I think you will agree, which it seems like you do, that hadeeth gives finer points of the rules and regulation and there are shariat rules that are in ahadeeth that are not in Quran. That namaz was just an example. Another close thing to namaz is the Adhaan. In fact, the words of Adhaan came in a dream to a sahabi and Rasoolullah approved of it, for it was from Allah. And, this is narrated in many authentic ahadeeth. And of course, as Allah has said Rasoolullah (saw) never said something concerning religion from his own whims and desires. It was all from Allah taa’la. And as I mentioned earlier, that’s why Allah says in many a places in Quran to be obey Allah and His messenger.

Then he’s not a genuine Hanafi/Malaki or Hambli. All four Imamas had clearly instructed that if someone finds anything against Quran and Sunna in their writings then He MUST reject that particular piece by any of them. Neither any of Imam had preached to reject other and accept them. All of them made their research in parallel and had no intention to refute each others. In short, none of them gave themselves preference over Quran and Sunnah.
I completely agree. In fact all four imams have said something similar but I can right now remember only a saying of Al-Imam Abu Hanifah: “My madhab is the saheeh (authentic) hadeeth”. And, I’ve read similar sayings of the rest of imams and their contemporaries. “none of them gave themselves preference over Quran and Sunnah”–this is a very very key point that definitely today’s modernists/liberals don’t do.

Yes, I think this is Iqbal’s shair. And, it just goes to show that Iqbal was nowhere close in his ideas to today’s modernist/liberals, etc.

Comment by Ibrahim


I think you will agree, which it seems like you do, that hadeeth gives finer points of the rules and regulation and there are shariat rules that are in ahadeeth that are not in Quran.

100% agreed but my ppoint was that Quran doesn’t free us to practise bascis which ususally hadeeth rejectors preach.

Comment by Adnan Siddiqi

My dear Messrs. Farhan and Ibrahim,

I would like you to contemplate, for a moment, the possibility that if Islam is a way of life for all times, then some of what it prescribes applies only to a certain time.

If the Koran and Hadith show us the right way to live a life, then at a given time in history we ought to apply those teachings which are most suited to our epoch.

To take a static view of society, to apply all teachings mechanically, to use the same standards today as those which were in vogue during the time of Prophet Mohammed would be to go against the very spirit of Islam (if it is a way of life for all times).

Do you not agree?

If I may go a little further, might I ask you this:

Shouldn’t we accept that some teachings apply to only a given time, and with the passage of time they no longer remain applicable?

Think of a manual that teaches you how to drive. If it tells you to brake when you reach a signal that shows a red light, then you are to brake ONLY when you reach a signal that shows a red light.

To apply all teachings of Islam together, in a holistic attempt to copy the society established by Prophet Mohammed, is it not similar to applying the brakes all the time, instead of in those particular situations where the manual tells you to apply them?

Please note, all my earlier statements are based on the assumption that the Koran is fully correct and that Islam is the best way of life for all times to come.

Sincerely,
Kronstadter

Comment by kronstadter

@ Ibrahim:

You’ve given me a lot to respond to. But give me a little time and I will get back to you with a comprehensive response – just have a lot of work to get done over the next few days. Will get back to you asap.
Comment by ayesha 01.04.07 @ 8:56 am

Where is she after all these days? Where is your response aysha?

Ibrahim bhai this is another failed display of liberal hypocracy.

Comment by BitterDuaiee

Ibrahim, I have been busy with real life. As you can see I have barely blogged since January. I will try to clear my “liberal hyprocrasy”, if I can manage enough time on my hands.

Comment by ayesha

Comments On Islamic Jamiat: ALMOST FAKE MEMBERS, we can say (Right is Might).

!st Of all i could like to Introduce my self … I am a student from PU (Old Campus).

1)Islamic Jamiyat NAZIM, years back doing immoral activity with a boy(I think JAmiyat is more advanced than non-muslims :O:X)

2)Last time smoking was Prohibited in old campus cafe by Jamiyat but Jamiyat members doing it with pride or sumthing like they are more superior.

3)They thinks, what they are saying is only Islam, unfortunately limiting Islam is itself sin…(In my point of view)

>>If sumone thinks female n male Students should not study togather then why CO-Education ?

>>2nd thing female n male students are not ON DATE IN PUNJAB UNIVERSITY (there are thousands of other places in Lahore :O), surly they are discussing Lectures, assignments ,Projects Or Presentation details …. or stuff like that.

Anywayz …. time to leave now ….

Comment by As!f

BitterDuaiee, let her take as much time as possible, no problem. Ayesha, you responded to BitterDuaiee as if you thought I wrote the comments in disguise as BitterDuaiee! FYI, BitterDuaiee is not me, Ibrahim.

But, I want to change something I said because I want to be careful when talking about Islam and its scholars. First, I made typo mistake and said that Rashid Rida was student of afghani when I meant Muhammad Abduh was student of afghani and of course Rida was student of Abduh. Secondly, the way I wrote it, it might seem that afghani was all for revolution and fighting and such, and I want to say that I can’t be 100% sure if what I said is definitely true. I’ve read different things on him concerning revolution, I think, and I need to study more of him or talk to someone more knowledgeable about him to get to the final opinion. Lastly, I also don’t feel right about this blunt statement “Afghani’s and Rashid Rida’s ideas were rejected at that time and are rejected today by scholars who have deep knowledge and spent their whole lives for the sake of Islam”. In flow of writing, I meshed Afghani and Rashid Rida together without paying attention. It seems that afghani’s ideas might be objected to but I can’t say any such thing on Rashid Rida. I need more knowledge.

However, these are important (to me at least) but “cosmetic” changes. The ideology of my comments is definitely still the same, i.e. besides many other things you’ve al-afghani and Rida all wrong. Answer, if you want, at your pleasure. wassalam

Comment by Ibrahim

brothers i do not think that ms. ayesha will ever try to answer you… she might have run out of answers… these “next few days” of hers have taken quite some time, dont you think???
i would like to say that i respect what you brothers are doing and will pray for you Insha Allah that you may show ms. ayesha and her band of modernists(with all due respect) the right path… may Allah help you in your quest… Ameen

Comment by tariq saber




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