A Friday Sermon?
At these times when information is so easily available, one wonders whether the Western masses are more ignorant of what their governments are doing, or the top echelon pro-Western elements of the Muslim world, who have the temerity to state that Muslims are a troublesome people, writes SYED IQBAL ZAHEER.
An article appearing in an on-line magazine called “thefridaytimes” has been forwarded to us for our comments. We are not forgotten by our readers when Muslims write books and articles attacking Islam. Perforce we have to ignore most, first, for their low quality content, and second because “get at Islam and its clergy,” attitude is not so uncommon among the secularly-minded Muslims, especially those who could “make it to the West” or have created a little West within their own circles in the East. Whenever Islam is attacked, this class in particular feels humiliated and, in turn, attacks Islam and its clergy. So, Islam receives battering from both ends. Indeed, like Muslims in Syria and Iraq, from several ends.
The article is primarily about Hijab, which, according to the writer, has nothing to do with Islam, but has been imported from every possible imaginable source: Jewish, Christian, pagan et al. We decided to respond to it because it uses a methodology that appears to be scholarly, (disturbing many a simple-minded Muslim) although, in actual fact, it is little more than an ill-informed secularly educated man’s gossip. Another factor that determined our response is that as things get worse, this kind of writing is expected to pop its head up, oftener. What appears now in “thefridaytimes,” could appear as a Friday Sermon somewhere in future. As things are not going in favor of Islam in the political and military arenas, we might witness a repeat of the elitists’ attack on Islam as witnessed during the past two centuries, ending with the discovery of oil. Oil cooled many angry heads.
At all events, we might take up the issue of Hijab some time later, but should for the moment point out that it has been written in such a pseudo-scholarly manner that it could as well be ignored. For the moment we could look into some other aspects of the article. The opening lines open on a different note. They state:
“Muslims around the world are battling against everything and everyone at the moment. This is because they are paranoid, albeit with some compelling reasons, that the world is out to get them. Everywhere they go they are perceived as troublesome and everyone you ask considers them a problem.”
A more cynical and hurtful statement by a Muslim – about Muslims – could not be made. Especially, coming as it does, from a country – Britain – where it is popularly believed that your sympathy should be with the underdog, it sounds more repugnant.
The fact is, Muslims are not battling against everyone and everywhere. It is by everyone, virtually, that they are being attacked: militarily, religiously, politically, culturally, or, in the least, verbally. Everywhere that you see smoke and dust rising in huge balls, it is they who are discovered dead and injured under the pall, under the concrete.
It is not the Muslims who have invaded USA, Britain, France, or others, but rather they have been invaded and are battling against either external enemies, or internal ‘Baatini forces’ living within them who have come into the open banking on the help and support they receive from abroad.
If everyone perceives the Muslims as a troublesome people, while, in actual fact, they are victims of truck-loads of trouble off-loaded onto their soils, then, it is everyone who is wrong. Muslims should have the courage to say that everywhere they are confronted: whether in commuter trains, college lawns, psychiatric wards, social or political platforms. They must tell everyone, bluntly: “You are wrong.”
They must apprise their critics, especially the masses, that a natural consequence of ‘everyone’s’ ignorance about what’s truly going on vis-à-vis Muslims is that their own (that is, the critics’) governments are outwitting them to steal their wealth while they are applauding their government’s savage policies against Muslims. Their ignorance about Muslims is backfiring on them. This is quite obviously visible in the West, where the middle class, which votes the politicians into positions of power, is disappearing (melting into those whom the beloved Senator McCain recently referred as “the low scum,” when they demonstrated against Kissinger). That on the one hand; on the other, the lower class is steadily heading towards ghettoes, if not already in. In contrast, those they vote for are fattening their purses – claiming that joblessness is decreasing, welfare system is growing, etc., without mentioning that, in the overall, poverty is increasing and the gulf between the rich and the poor is widening. (There are more billionaire Congressmen now than ever).
It is ignorance on part of the common people that they believe in the “cock and bull story” propaganda machine now head on against Islam and Muslims, while banknotes slip out of their hands to find safe haven in the pockets of the rich. That is how the ignorant are served. Their anger is directed to channels of no concern to them (a German senior activist recently remarked, “after all it is their country and they should be let alone”), and so, if they believe that Muslims are a reason behind much trouble in the world, it cannot be too surprising. What is surprising is that some Muslims should also fall victim to the systematic propaganda conducted by the begetters of violence, and sing the unmusical song of the raven mad.
But this is just one of the problems of being ignorant. Several other problems are kept away from their eyes, because their rulers have learned how to focus the eyes of the masses so intently on the Muslims, that when their pockets are picked, they hardly realize who did it, or, was it ever picked? Muslims must point out these things to those who think Muslims are a troublesome people.
That was about ‘everyone’ mentioned in the article of our concern; as regards ‘everywhere,’ it is exaggeration to say that the entire Muslim Ummah is in crisis. It is easily visible that the majority of Muslims live out their lives, like any other citizen of the world, good or bad (regretfully), and the peace that is prevalent in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Kuwait, Bahrain, UAE, Qatar, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Bosnia, Kosovo, Kazakhstan, Tataristan, one-fourth of China, Turkmenistan, Kirgizstan, Tajikistan, China’s Xinjiang Province, Mauritania, Guinea, Ghana, Kenya, etc. cannot be matched by any country of the globe. Absence of rape, murder, kidnap, gambling, alcoholism, porn, gay, lesbianism, male and female sex-trading, single parent family-ing, deceitful banking, are the hallmark of those countries which, through the media that they own, conceal their own failures and highlight stray incidents of the Muslim world.
As regards Muslims battling against this or that, it is also noticeable that if there is violence and loss of peace in any of their lands, it is because of the ‘power-games’ played on, and in, their countries by those who pull the strings from behind the beautiful drapes.
When was the last time a Muslim army invaded Britain, France, Germany, Canada or USA? When will it be the last time the West will invade Afghanistan, Iraq, or fight proxy wars (with the help of Israel, Nusayris, or the Shi`ah) in Yemen, Central African Republic, South Sudan, Syria, Libya?
Who is it who manufactures arms, is its largest exporter, who trains disgruntled and disgruntling elements, smuggles them into target countries, sets them up against each other, supplies them with arms, offers itself as one who can end the conflict by high-altitude bombing – all the while continuing to issue statements that the rival parties should sit down and discuss peace, with itself as the mediator? Who does this? And who makes war-cost bills in billions of dollars, payable either in cash deposited, or already in deposit, in its banks, or signs agreement to supply oil at pre-1973 prices over the next half a century?
At these times when information is so easily available, one wonders whether the Western masses are more ignorant of what their governments are doing, or the top echelon pro-Western elements of the Muslim world, who have the temerity to state that Muslims are a troublesome people. Consider Joachim Hagopian (perhaps Jewish), who, having served as a Clinical Psychologist and was a licensed therapist in the mental health field for more than a quarter century, now a writer:
“The world is now learning just how devious, diabolical and desperate the warmongering, pro-Zionist powerbrokers who are the war criminals controlling the US rogue government really are. Their evil lies are unraveling their demonic agenda as the truth cannot be stopped.” [Joachim Hagopian – http://empireexposed. blogspot. com/]
You open any number of websites where intellectuals place their writings, and you will discover that nine out of ten are expressing the same sentiments. They are not anti-Semites or American haters. Many, if not most, are, in fact, Americans. And they are well-placed, well-respected intellectuals. Further, they are not writing in love of Islam and Muslims, but in disgust that the politicians of their country have brought their nation to such a pass. Said Dr Michel Chossudovsky, Professor of Economics at the University of Ottawa, founder of the Centre for Research and Globalization and an award-winning author, in a recent speech:
“…the so-called war on terrorism is a front to propagate America’s global hegemony and create a New World Order… Terrorism is made in the US… terrorists are not the product of the Muslim world.
…the US global war on terrorism was used to enact anti-terrorism laws that demonised Muslims in the Western world and created Islamophobia… NATO was responsible for recruiting members of the Islamic State while Israel is funding ‘global jihad elements inside Syria.’ …The global war on terrorism is a fabrication, a big lie and a crime against humanity.”
How ridiculous that Muslims should be voicing opinions that are 180 degrees at variance with the current opinions of the Western intellectuals!
The writer of the article we are discussing, who happens to be a consultant psychiatrist and director of medical education in England, says that he has studied Islam for three decades, and presents us, down the lines, a sample of his learning. He writes:
“I also believe that Islam is a universal religion, which is divinely designed not to come into conflict with any culture or society for all times. If there is ever a conflict, it is due to a flawed fiqh usually perpetrated by an ignorant and mostly crooked Muslim clergy.”
Unstomachable sentences from someone who has been studying Islam for thirty years! The words are in flagrant opposition to the Qur’an and Sunnah. The Qur’an said,
“If they get the better of you they will be your enemies and stretch their hands and tongues at you in evil, and they ardently desire if you could disbelieve.” (60: 2)
The writer may ask himself, has the Qur’an made a false prediction?
How would he like to understand the following verse of the Qur’an?
“There surely is a good example for you in Ibrahim and those with him, when they said to their people, ‘We are quit of you and of whatever you worship, apart from Allah. We disown you, and enmity and hatred has appeared between you and us forever, until you believe in Allah alone.’” (60: 4)
Does any Muslim think that our religion is different from the religion of Ibrahim? Does he believe that if Ibrahim’s religion was in conflict with the culture and society of Ibrahim’s time, Muhammad’s religion will not come into conflict with any, ever?
Should we not read the Qur’an, (even if in translation), once in our lifetime? It said,
“They will keep fighting against you until they turn you back from your religion – if they can.” (22: 217)
Should we believe that the Qur’an made a prediction that never proved true?
Talking of several events before the ‘end of times,’ the Prophet said,
“…then there will be a peace agreement between you and the Romans (any of the Western nations). Subsequently, they will betray you and come down to (fight) you as 80 divisions, under each division 12,000 soldiers.” (Bukhari)
Some versions identify the place where the ‘one-million (Christian) army’ will land, as a Syrian town. Should the Muslims be ready to face that situation one day, and educate their offspring about what the future holds for them, or ignore the Prophetic prophesy as dubious of the class made by Nostradamus?
Does the writer we have quoted think that the fourteen Crusades of the past were, as he puts it, “due to a flawed fiqh usually perpetrated by an ignorant and mostly crooked Muslim clergy” or, would he be disappointed to hear that the understanding displayed in the above lines leads the readers to believe that just as his reading of the present, his reading of the past, too, is deeply “flawed”?
Although we happen to be critics of the Muslim clergy (not the scholars – the `Ulama’), yet we are forced to conclude that the clergy’s understanding of this world or the next, sounds like it is better than the understanding of the elitists of the present-day Ummah – although the oil is still there.
And, not to be ungrateful, the clergy stays faithful to Islam and Muslims, irrespective of what you have to say about them.