Letters to the Editor
Q: The editorial of your magazine (December 1999) on evolution was absolutely ridiculous.
When we say Muhammad was a Messenger, it is a ridiculous statement to the Christians, because they believe he was not a Messenger. Similarly, when we say God is one without partners, it is a ridiculous statement for the polytheists because they believe in multiple gods sharing the same powers and attributes as the Supreme one on top of them all.
In the like manner, when we say the theory of evolution, as presented by the scientists, is an extremely doubtful proposition, then, it is a ridiculous statement to you. Why? Because it goes against your “faith.” We say that because anybody who considers the theory of evolution as true, is dogmatic rather than scientific in his attitudes, since the theory has not been proved true.
We hope you know why R. C. Lewontin, a leading geneticist, has called one of his books “The Doctrine of DNA.”
Q: Not only the logic is ridiculous but some of the “facts” given by you show that you are totally in darkness as far as your knowledge about animals is concerned. You should know that tigers, lions and leopards interbreed with one another. A cross between a male tiger and a lioness is called a tigion and a tigion aged 25 lives in the Calcutta zoo.
What we wrote is that the lions and cheetahs do not interbreed with each other. And, what we meant is: in the normal circumstances, in their natural habitats. We didn’t say a cross cannot be produced. Humans have been producing a cross between a donkey and a horse for centuries. What’s so new about tigions?
You might also be aware that when a member of one species is mated with a member of another species, the offspring is sterile. That’s what, in fact, makes them two different species.
Moreover, we gave the definition of “species.” Even if we had given the wrong example, which we didn’t, the validity of the definition wouldn’t change. Species is an organism that doesn’t interbreed with those of another species. Do you have another definition?
Q: You have also stated that the cheetah and leopard are related but I would request you to look at more close examples.
Cheetah’s and leopards are unimportant side-track issues. Our main point is, there are big loopholes in the theory of evolution. Some of them were stated in the lead article under discussion. What do you have to say about them, specifically, in scientific terms?
Q: Is it not due to evolution that from one species of dog, human beings have developed two hundred plus breeds which look as different from each other as chalk and cheese e.g. Alsatian, Bulldog, Pomeranian.
It is interesting to see how easily you slipped from species to breeds, since emergence of new breeds has nothing to do with evolution.
All dogs are one species. They can interbreed. Human beings have produced hundreds of breeds, by crossing within the breed. But they have not produced a species. Even if a species came into being by such breeding, since it will be entirely artificial, it will not add weight to the argument. During experiments in the laboratories the scientists once produced, of course unwittingly, a frog that had an extra leg on its head. But, that will not go to prove anything.
It wouldn’t prove for instance that once frogs had legs on their heads, or that they are the precursor of the rhinos; although many neo-Darwinists choose to argue in those terms.
Similarly, if a new species could somehow come into existence through crossing between two species, it would still be no proof that all species have grown one out of another. That has to happen everyday, in the biological world. And, not a single case has been reported of a new species coming into existence before our eyes, in the natural habitat. This is what takes the shine off the theory.
Q: Why look at dogs? Look at the most shameless creature on earth, the naked ape which calls itself human being.
Those who consider themselves “naked apes” evince the qualities of nakedness and shamelessness, and are perfect apes in their behaviour, although seemingly they look like human beings. Allah said about them, “Surely, We created man on the best pattern. Then (because of their arrogance and evil deeds), We condemned them to the lowest level (of existence).” He said in another place, “They are animals, rather, worse guided on the path.”
We Muslims are neither naked, nor shameless apes. And, it is possible that if the tirade of the evolutionists against the human species is not stopped at this point, we Muslims would be the only human beings left on the planet.
Q: Why are Africans black, Caucasians white etc., if not for evolution to adapt to the environment?
Adaptation is not evolution. At best, it is a step in the direction of evolution, if evolutionary theory is true. But, since no adaptation has led to appearance of a new species the theory of evolution couldn’t be proved true.
To explain further, varieties within a species at best reflect adaptability. As to who plays with the genes to produce the variety, science could not determine. The suggestion by most scientists that it happens by accident is not a very clever proposition. However, adaptability admitted, it does not lead to the notion of evolution. Hundreds of organisms adapt themselves to the environment (by what force and what process, we do not know). But they do adapt, and that is not evolution. Evolution and adaptability are two different things: one is a concept and the other a biological process.
As regards Africans being blacks and Caucasians being white, one may ask, if Africans are black because of the exposure to the sun, what is the explanation for the Peninsular Arabs who are not blacks, although the sunshine is more severe in this part, than in many parts of Africa, and, moreover, without a single river, the area has no trees for shade? The Arabs, living in the deserts since most ancient times, are better qualified to becoming blacks than the Africans whose lands are covered with thick forests providing shades for most of the times.
By the way, we will have some interesting things to say about whites and blacks. You might read it in one of our forthcoming writings on the topic of evolution.
Q: May I remind you that inter breeding alone does not indicate the closeness of two animals – as the genetic code does. Humans and chimpanzees share 98% of the genes. How do you explain this?
The statement about genetic similarity is largely theoretical. The only way to determine similarities and dissimilarities between the two genetic codes would be to spend a few billion dollars and map the chimpanzee genetic code, just as the human genetic code has been mapped. It is only then that a comparison would be possible.
Further, even if very close similarity is proved, it will lead to new set of questions. One question that will have to be answered is, if the working genes of the two, chimpanzees and humans, are different merely by 0.4% (Carl Sagan, “Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors”), why the humans and chimpanzees are so different? In fact, it proves the power of the Creator, who, working with the same basic stuff, with an extremely minor variation at the base, is Able to produce two species that are so different from each other.
Q: And as far as oviparity, viviparity is concerned, the scale of evolution depends not on the giving of both but on how well they take care of their young. An oviparous bird takes better care of his/her young than a viviparous snake, hence it is more evolved.
You have completely ignored the basic issue. Why are there oviparouses and viviparouses in wrong places in the tree of evolution?
Q: Thereby, your logic is totally flawed.
That’s the whole problem with the evolutionists. When they have scientific facts in their favour, they use them. When not, they switch to philosophy. Not that our logic or their logic is flawed. It is that the approach is all wrong. It is sometimes scientific and at others dogmatic.
Further, lacking definite proof, they cite examples from some exotic plants and animals, or their exotic behaviour and try to convince the people that what they say is logical. Well, logical or not, that is not the way you prove evolution.
You prove it with some solid biological evidence. Moreover, so far as logic is concerned, it all depends on who is the cleverer in a game of logic. One might put things logically, but someone more intelligent will show the loopholes and demonstrate how the argument is not logical to the end. A third person, cleverer than the two, will show both are illogical. We are sure you have come across this kind of thing in scientific speculations.
On this topic, it seems to be logical to say that the humans, being so similar to apes, are their descendants. A million years back they came down the trees and developed into Homo Sapiens. But why not reverse it and say that the apes are descendants of the human beings, having climbed the trees finding life easier there, and more cheerful, which in fact is the case. Chimpanzees lead a far less stressful life, suffer no shortage of food, have more sex than the human beings, enjoy lots of free time, move about freely, and, apparently are more satisfied with their lives than the human beings who are constantly fretting and worrying over the quality of lives. Why is it not logical to think that the apes are descendants of humans? So you see, logic is a double-edged sword. Nevertheless, when we argue against the evolutionists, we use their own arguments, logical or not, because we need to prove their error on their grounds.
Q: While one world is entering the 21st century, your magazine seems to be going two centuries backward.
After your objections to a single article, now you see the whole magazine as going two centuries backward. Why? Because it presents Islamic material. If we sing the same foolish songs as the popular science books do, and include a few nude pictures, in the name of science, as they do, then, suddenly we will jump into the twenty-first century.
By the way, the theory of evolution is nothing new to us. What’s new about it is that it has recruited some scientists for its cause. Before Wallace and Darwin, the theory was presented a thousand years ago, although not in scientific jargon, by a Muslim intellectual group that went by the name “Ikhwan al-Safa”. We Muslims didn’t believe in it then, and don’t believe in it now because we don’t see the scientists coming up with any solid evidence. Therefore, you better place us back a thousand years, instead of two hundred. Finally, we hope you know that the world would not advance scientifically if some people did not doubt the validity of what they see, feel and are told as obvious facts. That applies to the theory of evolution also. The answer to the origins of the human species does not lie in that direction. It is time some scientists turned their attention to new theories, not necessarily revelational, but scientific, if they wish to avoid stagnation in this field, which is what we are witnessing since last one hundred years.
Q: I have a few books to recommend for you to become a better editor: (1) Carl Sagan’s The Dragons of Eden, Desmond Morris’ The Naked Ape and Richard Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker.
You have made the right statement about the benefits to be drawn from the books of your suggestion: “books: to become a better editor.” Yes, that is the function of these books, at best. They teach you the language and inform you about the tricks of the trade, viz., “How to become a millionaire?” If you have enough command over the language, a good public standing (being a scientist is not enough), and can put forward to the general public, the intellectuals and the informed men and women, what will excite their imagination, and is a bit spicy (whether true or not), if you can do that, you become a millionaire. Otherwise, who will buy your stuff? Who wants to read pure science? Not even the scientists, because they would have read the papers in scientific journals. So, how to sell your books? Well, introduce the kind of stuff that Desmond refers to, (in his “The Naked Ape”), as the most thriving industry in the world. He did that in chapter two. If the book sold in millions, there is a good reason behind it. Further, we assume an intelligent reader knows the flaws in their arguments. They put the horse before the cart. If you have put your faith and trust in them, instead of acquiring a scientific, inquiring mind, then you take the back seat and end up in an unknown alley.
To give you an example of how they argue, let us quote from Morris’s work of your recommendation. (He is speaking of the hunting habits of man in his earlier stages of evolution when he was half way between an ape and modern man):
“From tool-using to tool-making was the next step, and alongside this development went improved hunting techniques, not only in terms of weapons, but also in terms of social co-operation. The hunting apes were pack hunters, and as their techniques of killing were improved, so were their methods of social organisation. Wolves in a pack deploy themselves, but the hunting ape already had a much better brain than a wolf and could turn it to such problem as group communication and cooperation…” (p. 15)
In the following passage, he speaks of the (supposed) early humans: And,
“Essentially this was a hunting group of males. The females were too busy rearing the young to be able to play a major role in chasing and catching prey.” (p. 15)
Then he proceeds to say on p. 127:
“As we have already noted, the improved food-collecting techniques of modern agriculture have left the majority of the adult males in our societies without a hunting role. They compensate for this by going out to ‘work.’ Working has replaced hunting, but has retained many of its basic characteristics. It involves a regular trip from the home base to the ‘hunting’ grounds. It is a predominantly masculine pursuit, and provides opportunities for male-to-male interaction and group activity. It involves taking risks and planning techniques. The pseudo-hunter speaks of ‘making a killing in the City’. He becomes ruthless in his dealings. He is said to be ‘bringing home the bacon’.”
Let us ask, what this has to do with science? This is pure speculation. If somebody believes in it as facts, we can only feel mortified for him. Apart from that, how convincing is the statement that today’s trips to offices and factories are similar to hunting trips of the past?
Or, to take another example,
“In the wild state, monkeys and apes can frequently be seen to groom themselves, systematically working through the fur, picking out small pieces of dried skin or foreign bodies. These are usually popped into the mouth and eaten, or at least tasted.” (p. 135)
“Special grooming invitation signals have been evolved here and ‘social’ activities are prolonged and intense. When a groomer monkey approaches a groomee monkey, the former signals its intention to the latter with a characteristic facial expression. It performs a rapid lip-smacking movement, often sticking its tongue out between each smack.” (p. 136)
That was about monkeys from whom according to Morris, humans have evolved. So, he looks into the grooming habits among modern day humans. His findings lead him to write:
“Clearly, if we turn now to our own species, we might expect to see some manifestation of this basic primate grooming tendency, not only as a simple cleaning pattern, but also as in a social context. The big difference, of course, is that we no longer have a luxuriant coat of fur to keep clean. When two naked apes (i.e., humans) meet and wish to reinforce their friendly relationship they must therefore find some kind of substitute for social grooming. If one studies those situations where, in another primate species, one would expect to see mutual grooming, it is intriguing to observe what happens. To start with it is obvious that smiling has replaced lip-smacking,” (p. 137)
But, what about the grooming and lice popping habit of the apes? How does it manifest itself among the humans? The answer is:
“True, the smiling response can be repeated and extended in time long after the initial contact, but something else is needed, some thing more ‘occupational’. Some kind of activity, like grooming, has to be borrowed and converted. Simple observation reveals that the plundered source is verbal vocalisation.” (p. 137)
The author elaborates further to explain that social gatherings of the humans, starting with a smile, filled with conversations, and ending with a smile, are evolved forms of grooming habits of the monkeys from whom the humans have evolved.
Now, if someone dismisses this kind of talk as rubbish, while another falls on the words as guidelines for life and thought in the twenty-first century, then, that is a question of faiths and beliefs. It has nothing to do with science.
The other two authors you suggested have produced the same class of material. They hardly present anything of the nature of solid science. Yes, there is plenty of scientific information that is connected with each other with the help of speculation. They endeavour to prove, with the help of reason and logic, how evolution worked in the past. But, evolution cannot be proved through reason and logic. There has to be some strong scientific evidence. There is none that they could present in their several books. To give another example from another book of your recommendation, “The Blind Watchmaker” by Richard Dawkins, (p. 184):
“Why, for instance, are trees in forests so tall? The short answer is that all the other trees are tall, so no one tree can afford not to be. It would be overshadowed if it did. This is essentially the truth, but it offends the economically minded human. It seems so pointless, so wasteful. When all the trees are the full height of the canopy, all are approximately equally exposed to the sun, and none could afford to be any shorter. But if only they were all shorter; if only there could be some sort of trade-union agreement to lower the recognised height of the canopy of forests, all the trees would benefit. They would be competing with each other in the canopy for exactly the same sunlight, but they would all have ‘paid’ much smaller growing costs to get into the canopy. The total economy of the forest would benefit, and so would every individual tree. Unfortunately, natural selection doesn’t care about economies, and it has no room for cartels and agreements. There has been an arms race in which forest trees became larger as the generations went by. At every stage of the arms race there was no intrinsic benefit in being tall for its own sake. At every stage of the arms race the only point in being tall was to be relatively taller than neighbouring trees.”
So, that’s the explanation for why the trees in the forests are so tall, and roughly of the same height, when they could have lived off better being short. The explanation provided sounds logical. But, is it? Let us see. He writes that there is no trade unionism, cartels and agreements between the trees that could have helped them become shorter. Plants do not know trade unionism. True. But, true only to those who put their minds to rest and let others think for them. Otherwise, it can be asked, “But the explanation offered proves that there is, in fact, trade unionism between the plants. Without an agreement between themselves, how did they all arrive at more or less the same height? True, they couldn’t have agreed to, for lack of trade unionism, reduce their heights. But they have agreed to increase their heights to the present level, haven’t they?”
Again, he states that every tree increased in its height as the others did, otherwise it would miss out on the sunlight.
But he does not explain how one tree got to know that another was growing taller! Also, Dawkins does not explain why some trees do not grow taller, bigger and stronger, and eat off the ones by their side, (just as animals do) and get all the sunlight. Surely, as he states in the first sentence above, if “no tree can afford not to be (taller)” why then one of them cannot afford to be taller (bigger and stronger) than every other one and kill them off? We are sure he is aware of how the siblings of several birds kill off their brothers and sisters in the nest itself. The reason given by the biologists for this phenomenon is that the killer feels threatened and kills for reasons of his own survival. Why not plants then? If not for the length, we would have added on examples to demonstrate that the line of argument adopted is untenable and is a logical proceeding that can be easily given a 180 degrees turn.
Q: May Allah make you more wise.
Q: Though there is nothing wrong in spreading one’s faith, one should not do so by telling lies (as you have done in one editorial) demeaning other religions and giving wrong information. The Qur’an prohibits telling lies.
You didn’t state what those lies were. Opinions are not lies, are they?
Q: Worship of god is as bad or as good as worshipping an idol.
True, if you are worshipping a god, any god, then it is as good or as bad as worshipping an idol. But, when you worship a God Who unveiled Himself through Revelation, then the two acts are not the same. Let us answer you with a Qur’anic verse. Allah says (13: 14), “To Him in truth are prayers due. As for those they invoke besides Him, they do not respond to them with anything, except as one who stretched out his hands towards water so that it may reach his mouth. But it is not going to reach it. The evocation of the unbelievers only goes in vain.”
So you see, that’s the difference. Also, it is a question of very simple logic. Either God exists or He does not. If He exists, He has to be One. What’s the point then in worshipping idols?
Q: Seeing god in an idol is different from treating an idol as a god.
You couldn’t be further than the truth. Seeing god in an idol is, in fact, the same as treating an idol as a god. If you broke an idol that someone is worshipping, he will be greatly mortified. He will not say, “Well, I was only imagining god in this idol. It’s broken. It doesn’t matter. Now I shall imagine my god in a telephone set and address my prayers to it.” He wouldn’t say that. Rather, he will act very violently towards you. Also, if you suggested a change in the form of an idol being worshiped, from the present form to hundreds of other possible images, you will find that a voluntary alternative is not acceptable. To give you an example, if you opened a shop and kept idols of completely new forms, never worshiped in those forms before, you won’t be able to market any. This indicates that the veneration of the idols, as they are, is because they are imagined to possess Divinity to some degree or the other. In fact, if the idols are desecrated, the next day’s newspapers would be screaming, “gods desecrated!”
Thirdly, the material is also of importance. If you made an idol out of say plastic, the worshiper might not accept it.
In short, a lot of importance is attached to the idols. That apart, we do not know why you are defending idol-worship, when the better educated Hindus believe it is not a part of their religion. They say the Vedas do not recommend the practice.
Q: Islam is in no way superior to any other religion and is only equal to other religions.
Apart from a verifiable fact that Islam is founded on an uncorrupted Revelation of God, let us quote here from the Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics:
“Belief in the one Deity, sovereign in the universe carries with it a sense of security and of elevation which has an ennobling influence on thought and life. It makes man strong and free in mind. Here is the secret of the transformation which Islam effects for the African animist … the monotheist … lifts his face to heaven and gives his worship to the Supreme alone, and asks help from a Power which, he is assured, has no rival.” (X. p. 171)
That’s from a non-Muslim. What about those whose experience is not vicarious?
Q: I plead you not to fool people in the name of spreading the great faith of Islam. Allah does not will it.
Are we fooling the people when we call them to the worship of one god? Are we fooling the people when we invite them to the Qur’an, the Revelation of God? Are we fooling the people when we say to the antagonist and the skeptic, that you have the freedom to conduct research to find out if the Qur’an is a revelation or not? Are we fooling the people when we invite them to prove that the Qur’an was written down by Muhammad? Are we fooling the people when we say to them that when a scientist says humans produce pheromones, believe them because this is a fact that can be proven to everyone’s satisfaction. But when the scientist says women are shorter than men because men exude pheromones from their armpits, and women’s nose have to be in that line, to be sexually attracted to males. When the scientist says that, then, we say to the people, the man is not talking science, he is talking philosophy and the statement is a conjecture. Can these statements of ours be considered as efforts at fooling the people in the name of Islam?
Before closing, we are duty bound to offer you suggestions about reading in return of your suggestion. We recommend that you read three books, all on the life of the Prophet. His extremely rational outlook is bound to influence you and give you the right frame of mind for studying scientific works. The books are: (1) by Martin Lings, (2) By Muhammad Hussain Haykal as translated by Ismail Raja’i Farooqui, and (3) by Ibn Is-haq (d. 150 A.H.), as translated by Alfred Guillaume (Oxford Publication).
Q: In the October 1999 issue of YMD in the column, ‘Flashes from the Muslim world,’ the magazine states that Indian Muslims have average literacy rate of about 50%. To the best of my knowledge the average literacy rate of Indian Muslims is about 20%. And not 50%.
Probably the survey considered urban population.
Q: And also it is stated that nearly 40,000-50,000 citizens of USA embrace Islam every year. Can you please tell me from which source you got this data? Someone told me that the figure is about 4000 and not 40,000.
Who is that someone? Information of this sort comes from reports and not from someone guessing from his armchair. Kindly check with Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) for full information.
Q: Regarding the issue of theory of evolution, a trillion is not a 1000 million but a 1000 billion.
Since you have not given a clear reference, we do not know what was the error. But you are right about a trillion being equivalent of a 1000 billion in the USA.
Q: As Muslims, all of us at some time or the other come across “Ismaili Muslims” also known as the “Aga Khani Muslims.” Their ways have always been shrouded in secrecy, and no authentic books were available on their inner practices written by an Ismaili author.
I was an Ismaili (a devout follower of Aga Khan) for nearly 60 years, and have since the year 1987 embraced Islam and become a Muslim. Please visit the web-site http://www.mostmerciful.com. It is a comprehensive web site on the inner secrets, private practices and the so-called “esoteric beliefs” of the Ismailis, their origins and the history of their forty-nine Imams.
Q: I want the addresses of WAMY, and Faisal Islamic Centre, KSA.
The addresses are as follows:
1. World Assembly of Muslim Youth, P.O. Box 10845, Riyadh 11443, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Tel. 01-
4641663/ 4641669, Fax: 4641710.
2. King Faisal Foundation, P. O. Box 325, Riyadh 11411, Saudi Arabia, Tel. 4652255, Tlx. 201180 FAISAL SJ, or, 204694 KHAIRI SJ
Q: I appreciate your efforts since the last two decades to give a meaningful shape to the Indian Muslim society. I have few facts (and doubts) and I am sure you will concur with them. This is in reference to Mr. Khushwant Singh’s column published in Deccan Chronicle newspaper (Hyderabad) on 2nd May 1999. He writes that the most backward Muslim women in the world are in Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan followed by other Asian women. He brands the Pakistani women as the more polished, intelligent and self-sufficient. The reason is they gave up Burqah for good. His main target therefore, is Burqah.
Khushwant Singh might be trying to reconcile certain myths that have been exploded by certain facts. According to him, if Muslim countries achieve a certain technological level in development, there has to be a good un-Islamic reason for it. But, to us Muslims, a country is backward if it discards the veil.
Q: Personally, I respect and appreciate all those women who sincerely follows Islam and wear Burqah and, in contrast, believe that women who are out to tempt opposite sex knowingly, or unknowingly, by wearing what is likely to excite devilish desires are a cheap kind.
The terms you have used are most appropriate. To any human being, the worthiest thing in this world is his or her own body. One can sell off anything, but not one’s body. And no insult is greater than physical molestation. It is only the lowest of the low that sell their flesh. Those who wear fashionable clothes in public with the intention of attracting the looks have little regard for their body. Little wonder that most Western women who put on the veil have, when asked about the new experience, said that hijab gave them a sense of dignity and self-respect that they were missing earlier when they went about as non-Muslims, exposing their persons in various degrees.
Q: How to defend Islam against people of this kind. Should it be by writing directly to them or by replying to them in the newspapers?
The Indian press is a well-controlled press. If you sent them a reply, it would never be published. Only those letters will be published that are either not powerful, or, somehow help maintain the distortions. As regards writing to the writers, that also is hardly of any use. Firstly, they know more than you could tell them. They attempt a good study of Islam, hunting for vulnerable points of attack. What the facts are, do not interest them. They know what the facts are. How they can be twisted to gain a point for publication. Finally, they make their living by their writings. After all, they are a link in the supply and demand cycle. What they write, must receive applause. So, they follow the public desire. If the public wishes Islam bashing, that is what they will do. Truth or falsehood is not the interest of any. The general public wishes to read how awful Islam is, how outdated its rules and injunctions, how destructive its way of life, how backward Muslims all over the world, etc. As regards the Indian Muslims, they wish to hear that they are pro-Pakistanis, that they are not patriotic, that they are not whole-heartedly Indians, and so forth. This is what the general public wants to read while taking the morning tea. So that is what the journalist will write for their morning tea.
Now, if you write to one of them about what he wrote, there is little that he or the senior editors can do. They follow a commercial policy. If the people want lies, they will get lies. Some people will make money out of that supply. Is there a good economic reason why the board of directors should change their company policy?
Q: Isn’t this a high time for rich religious Muslims to help and encourage poor Burqah clad Muslim women by offering them education through private organizations?
Perhaps if these Burqah clad women were to be educated on the anti-Islamic pattern of education in force everywhere, including Pakistan, they will throw away their Burqahs. Further, if the non-Muslim press does Islam/ Muslim bashing, the Muslims do wealthy men bashing. Whatever the problem, the rich men are supposed to come to their rescue. They are expected to spend away all their wealth and become as poor as the 9999 out of 10,000 are. The Muslims do not realise that the wealth, quite meagre by comparison to what other communities have, of one out of 10,000 is inadequate to solve the staggering economic, social, or educational problems of the rest of the Muslims. Especially when there is a concerted effort by the majority to push them into the slum. The situation can be changed gradually, through an awakening, correct assessment of the situation, by fighting for rights, voting the right men to power, postponing the joys of life for the future welfare, and devoting all personal earnings to self and community development.
Finally, it must be realized that the Muslims are not a nation like any other nation. They have a duty towards those that are around them: that of making them recognize their Creator and taking them nearer to Him. They are also required to assume leadership role in moral affairs transforming themselves into a community whose example would come to mind whenever there is a moral crisis in other communities. Again, in their dealings with other communities, the most important canon should be the establishment of justice.
These are the principles and programmes that must be promoted on high priority and as a matter of life and death, at the community level, under the guidance of its able men whether religious scholars, social workers, educationists or others, who are going abegging for adequate following. Their tireless efforts go awry, because the community has been taught to only “take” and not “give”. The rank and file of Muslims are given to understand that if the rich gave away their money, their days of misery will become history. That their fate is right in their hands is something they are never told and are too slow to learn.
Q: Should we Muslims not strive hard for small columns in English newspapers or take out our own English newspapers to reveal nothing but truth, (i.e. Islam and its injunctions) which will keep the mischief of people like Kushwant Singh at bay?
Why not? And this is the responsibility of the new generation youth who understand the problems and their solutions better than any other.
Q: Please let me know, if you people have any plans for such kind of work as popularizing the veil among the Muslim women, or any other group is doing the same presently. I will be happy, if I can do something for them.
Dr. M. S. Ahmed,
Hyderabad – (A.P.)
Beyond publications, we – at Iqra Welfare Trust – have no such operations in mind at the moment. And we do not know of any organization that is working on those lines – specifically. But there are organizations that are devoted to the kind of awakening we have spoken of above, while others direct their efforts at social, educational and economic improvement. You may join any of them.