Islam’s Silent Moderates: Subverting the discourse of exclusion 5

by Shaheryar Ali

Of the three great systems of exclusion governing discourse – prohibited words, the division of madness and the will to truth …” Foucault

“If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all.”, Noam Chomsky

The most important system of control of discourse working in the moslem societies is “prohibition”. An imagined ‘Islam’ has emerged as the single most important tool for censorship in Islamic world. When it involves other issues like “blasphemy” one could be certain that no voice will ever emerge in opposition to censorship. This is one of the most suffocating experiences to live in when those who struggled all their lives for change and freedom appear to be on board with the tyrants. It is precisely this “ideological gap” within the progressive and modernist moslem establishment which let people like Ayan Hirsi Ali to emerge!

Heroine of the “new Right”, its fashionable these days to slander and dismiss Ali in almost all progressive circles of Europe. The problem unfortunately will not disappear by this continuous “Tabbara” on her. The lacuna within the progressive left ,which has sealed its lips in name of “anti imperialism” on fundamentalism, freedom of expression, and Islamic roots of violence and subjugation of women, has to be filled. The alliances from Lebanon to Islamabad with Islamic fundamentalism have to be broken and progressive position be taken on feminism and other “transitory demands”.

Keeping the Neo-conservative political agenda aside ,Ali stands out as a bold and eloquent lady who has dared to break the silence on Islamic gendricide. “The caged Virgin” and “The Son Factory” stand out as phenomenal contribution on developing a radical feminist discourse in moslem world. The article I have chosen present the core argument of the progressive moslem left , the argument of “moderate moslem majority” – that “the moderates” are silent .

I recall a line: “Since the holocaust, you know what the Jews fear the most?” ” The Silence!”

*************************************

Islam’s Silent Moderates

Ayan Hirsi Ali

In the last few weeks, in three widely publicized episodes, we have seen Islamic justice enacted in ways that should make Muslim moderates rise up in horror.

A twenty-year-old woman from Qatif, Saudi Arabia, reported that she had been abducted by several men and repeatedly raped. But judges found the victim herself to be guilty. Her crime is called “mingling”: when she was abducted, she was in a car with a man not related to her by blood or marriage, and in Saudi Arabia that is illegal. Last month, she was sentenced to six months in prison and two hundred lashes with a bamboo cane.

The woman and the man guilty of adultery or fornication, flog each of them with 100 stripes: Let no compassion move you in their case, in a matter prescribed by Allah, if you believe in Allah and the Last Day. (Quran 24:2)

Two hundred lashes are enough to kill a strong man. Women usually receive no more than thirty lashes at a time, which means that for seven weeks the “girl from Qatif,” as she is usually described in news articles, will dread her next session with Islamic justice. When she is released, her life will certainly never return to normal: already there have been reports that her brother has tried to kill her because her “crime” has tarnished her family’s honor.

We also saw Islamic justice in action in Sudan, when a fifty-four-year-old British teacher named Gillian Gibbons was sentenced to fifteen days in jail before the government pardoned her this week; she could have faced forty lashes. When she began a reading project with her class involving a teddy bear, Gibbons suggested the children choose a name for it. They chose Muhammad; she let them do it. This was deemed to be blasphemy.

Then there is Taslima Nasreen, the forty-five-year-old Bangladeshi writer who bravely defends women’s rights in the Muslim world. Forced to flee Bangladesh, she has been living in India. But Muslim groups there want her expelled, and one has offered five hundred thousand rupees for her head. In August, she was assaulted by Muslim militants in Hyderabad, and in recent weeks she has had to leave Kolkata and then Rajasthan. Nasreen’s visa expires next year, and she fears she will not be allowed to live in India again.

It is often said that Islam has been “hijacked” by a small extremist group of radical fundamentalists. The vast majority of Muslims are said to be moderates. But where are the moderates? Where are the Muslim voices raised over the terrible injustice of incidents like these? How many Muslims are willing to stand up and say, in the case of the girl from Qatif, that this manner of justice is appalling, brutal, and bigoted–and that no matter who said it was the right thing to do and how long ago it was said, this should no longer be done?

Usually, Muslim groups like the Organization of the Islamic Conference are quick to defend any affront to the image of Islam. The organization, which represents fifty-seven Muslim states, sent four ambassadors to the leader of my political party in the Netherlands asking him to expel me from parliament after I gave a newspaper interview in 2003 noting that, by Western standards, some of Muhammad’s behavior would be unconscionable.

A few years later, Muslim ambassadors to Denmark protested the cartoons of Muhammad and demanded that their perpetrators be prosecuted. But while the incidents in Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and India have done more to damage the image of Islamic justice than a dozen cartoons depicting Muhammad, the organizations that lined up to protest the hideous Danish offense to Islam are quiet now.

I wish there were more Islamic moderates. For example, I would welcome some guidance from that famous Muslim theologian of moderation, Tariq Ramadan. But when there is true suffering, real cruelty in the name of Islam, we hear, first, denial from all these organizations that are so concerned about Islam’s image. We hear that violence is not in the Quran, that Islam means peace, that this is a hijacking by extremists and a smear campaign, and so on. But the evidence mounts to the contrary.

Islamic justice is a proud institution, one to which more than a billion people subscribe, at least in theory, and in the heart of the Islamic world it is the law of the land. But take a look at the verse above: more compelling even than the order to flog adulterers is the command that the believer show no compassion. It is this order to choose Allah above his sense of conscience and compassion that imprisons the Muslim in a mindset that is archaic and extreme.

If moderate Muslims believe there should be no compassion shown to the girl from Qatif, then what exactly makes them so moderate? When a moderate Muslim’s sense of compassion and conscience collides with matters prescribed by Allah, he should choose compassion. Unless that happens much more widely, a moderate Islam will remain wishful thinking.

Miss Ali was born in an influential Somili family, her father was a major political figure who resisted the Marxist dictatorship in Somalia, She was raised a devout moslem and has studied at a Saudi religious school as well, she escaped to Europe to avoid a forced marriage and abuse. She studied dutch and Political Science in Netherlands and soon rose to prominence . She was elected to the Dutch Parliament on a Liberal Party ticket, initially she was in Labour which she soon left due to “Left’s silence” of Islamic fundamentalism. Deeply influenced by “European Enlightenment” she came out strongly against organized religions including Islam and Christianity. She wrote the screenplay of VanGoh’s movie “Submission” that made her a target of extremists. These event made her closer to the Neo-Conservative right. She is fellow of the conservative American think tank “American Enterprise Institute”. An out spoken feminist and secular humanist ,Ali has received many prestigious honors as well as death threats. She is included in Time magazine 100 most influential thinkers. Her work on comparison of thought of John Stuart Mill and Islam and her defense of European Enlightenment as “collective human asset” are especially important.

S.A

46 Comments

Filed under Islam, movements, musings, Religion, Rights, Women

46 responses to “Islam’s Silent Moderates: Subverting the discourse of exclusion 5

  1. I just read the full story of the girl from qatif.well its always a shameful act in the name of religion done by the people.i firmly believe that time ha snow come that when we have to be bold enough to speak againts the odd practices in religion too and we have to criticise them.
    As i have lived in saudi arabia for more than 20 years and i am eye witness of many things,but as you will be aware of this fact that in kingdom states you are not allow to speak or to voice againts any odds of that state/society.this is one case which has been published,but there are hundreds of cases which are not even allowed to get published in any newspaper due to strict censorship.i still remember that i had read the reports that the percentage of women in prison in saudi arabia get pregnant from the police department in a very large ratio,a state where there are no human rights,civil rights,women rights what else you could think.
    I do regret this wirst incident with this girl and now you look that those whom had done this shameful act are free in that male shownist society and the innocent girl has been punished.
    Thats called the free justice of the great islamic sharia and the islamic country.what apity??
    i truly ask the so called liberals to voice againts those arabs and that girl should be released free.
    i am sorry for that gidl as she is caged in the worst people,worst law!

  2. sherryx

    Thanks for your input! Liberals must have a voice i agree

  3. null

    how can any muslim support Ayaan ali ?
    What she calls is that we explicitly disregard and disobey the Quran . should we do that to please her and so called progressives ?
    will they be present on the Day of qiyamah to help us ?

  4. Well after reading the comment from Null i think its not a matter of obeying her or disobeying her.
    I think that we have to very much clear of the on going things with us,the worst human atrocities in the name of religion cannot be taken as granted for any odd reason.
    What we will say on this day of Qayyamah when we would be asked that what you were doing when this girl from qatif was being punished in the hands of islamic justice which is dominated a male shownism approach?.
    What you were doing when the women in prison were being pregnant by the policemen?
    What ms-Aayan is doing is that she is showing you a clear picture and now its a time for us to re-think on our so called religious moraliries.

  5. null

    Is there is hypocrisy in society ? yes Are there faults in judicial processes ? yes
    Should we try to overcome them ? Of course
    but that does not mean we abandon the quran and sunnah
    If the quran says one thing and the UN Declaration another we should follow the Quran and Sunnah and forget the UN ?
    But the progressives would have us not to follow the Quran and sunnah and instead follow man made laws

  6. sherryx

    A progressive will have you ask your conscience, that would you allow a teen age boy and girl be lashed or killed for loving each other?
    At a personal level, a boy or girl can choose following his or her conscience , which may be derived from Koran , and not to sleep together
    But any two who decide to sleep together because they love each other, should they be punished by the society? because Koran says so? Here is the question of Progressive thought, because a progressive will seek an interpretation of Koran which isnt barbaric.
    A progressive society will be where individuals can follow Koran and decide to live a way but others who dont cant be forced to live the way they dont want too.

  7. null

    Yes they should be punished provided there is sufficient evidence and the judicial process is transparent and fair.
    Because if you dont support it, you are indirectly supporting and legitimizing immorality in society.
    Because the Quran asks Nahi and munkar
    enjoining the right and forbidding the wrong.
    Dont you remember the Quranic verse :

    The woman and the man guilty of adultery or fornication, flog each of them with 100 stripes: Let no compassion move you in their case, in a matter prescribed by Allah, if you believe in Allah and the Last Day. (Quran 24:2)

    You are effectively suggesting that we should not follow the above Quranic injunction
    No wonder progressives are criticized for be la-deen.

  8. Our conservative friends are keep in writing in the favour of the punishment for that girl,but i am afraid that they havent write a single word against thoseislamic arabs whom had rapped that girl,great justice sir and i am very much impressed with this justice where the innocent girl has been rapped by the arabs and still that girl has to pay the price of her innocence and brutality happened with her!
    Hats off the justice.

  9. sherryx

    For you, your deen, and for us ours——–

  10. Null

    Yeah go on worshipping the false gods of secular humanism

  11. sherryx

    your religion, if i remember correctly explicitly prohibits you from calling some one else’s God as false, thats the Irony that kaffir secular humanists read koran and pious moslems dont ah—-

  12. asra

    do u really agree to what Ayan Hirsi Ali,have said about our religon, God,and our beloved Prophet??
    well if u think that whatever she said is right . then i really pity you and ur thinkin .. call me conservertive or backward . but in no condition i can stand with some one who favours the one who disregard my RELIGON,MY PROPHET .

  13. I do agree what Ms-Aayan said and lets be very factful and in indeed in a sorrow that some people ae writing against all odds but no one is saying to punish those real culprits whom had done the worst with that innocent girl.
    Its not to believe or not to beleieve but at least as a human being we must look the things in their facts,not just defending our things and beliefes but we should go ahead and say whats true!
    At least voise againts those arabs!

  14. sherryx

    @Asra, if you read the article you will know where do i agree and disagree with Miss Ali.
    I do Not agree with her politics, i agree with her that Islam like any other faith, religion, ideology, science must come under critical review. that doesnt mean disgracing Islam. Critique actually helps strengthening ideas!

  15. null

    sherryx yes everything including justice/equality progressivism/modernity/secular humanism must be critiqued from the perspective of the Quran and Sunnah the Wahi – Allah’s Gift to humanity

  16. sherryx

    Well we welcome critique to modernism and progressive thought, this very article if you see is a critique of established progressive thought!
    As far as “perspective” of Koran and Sunnah is concerned, its your right to do so. But academically it can never be the sole system of thought on which others be judged.

  17. sherryx

    and these hate sites and junk material is really not very helpful in understanding things

  18. Hossp

    I understand the dilemma here. The moderate Muslims are called upon to do all the right things. Take all the right actions. The actions that may require standing up to states like Saudi Arabia, Sudan or Somalia. The reality is that very few moderates venture in to political activism. Most of those are worried about their families’, kids and other issues that are more local than international. A moderate Muslim sitting in the US hardly has any influence over what takes place in Africa, Asia or in Europe. The moderate Muslims read the news, reject the punishments and move on too the next item.

    The people who can do something about miscarriage of justice are the ones who live in those countries. Repressive regimes make it even harder for the common folks to stand up to the state. The moderates are mostly middle class and middle classes are not in to agitation politics.

    Ms. Ayan Hirsi Ali builds a great narrative. She accuses every Muslim moderate or not, of not doing his/her part and then she asks, “ where are the moderates? Where are the Muslim voices raised over the terrible injustice of incidents like these?”
    How convenient? Easier said then done. The hyper speechifying completely ignores the facts on the ground.

    We cannot apply the standards for human rights developed in the advanced Western Societies to the tribal societies. Has some one ever asked Ms. Ali why she doesn’t go back to Somalia and preach all this in that tribal society? She wouldn’t do that but still would expect her compatriots living in a tribal society to do everything she wants them do and when they fail, she will make noises in Denmark, Washington and Other European countries.

    You don’t change realities on the ground by mere rhetoric. The right thing for Ms. Ali would be to help the poor folks in Somalia by increasing people’s awareness of their rights. She can do fund raising, she can get others involved and create some momentum to put pressure on the repressive regimes to change the mindset, change the social conditions and promote justice. She wouldn’t do it because she doesn’t want to go to jail. She doesn’t want to get killed in the tribal wars there. She sure wants other moderates to do that…The price of political activism is exorbitantly high in the tribal, backward and non democratic societies.
    A reasonably moderate country like Pakistan still can’t account for hundreds of Baloch disappeared for their political activism.

    It is always easy to write an article every month blaming the moderate Muslims for all the ills, from the comforts of her warm digs in Wash, DC.
    She is a moderate Muslim…maybe it is time for her to do something in Somalia!

    What a hypocrite!

  19. Shaheryar Ali

    @ Hossip, thanks, finally a very good contribution.
    The case you have built has a merit and i will humbly try to assert thats precisely what Miss Ali has pointed out. “The Silent” moderates, those who dont speak due to the reason you have mentioned.
    This is the root cause, the authorterian, tribal corrupt societies exist because of their silence. The tone she adopts is provocotive bcz she wasnt to shake them out of this inactivity.
    She is not a hypocrite , she is speaking ! She spoke in Somilia and thats why she had to run, but even in europe she started working and raised her voice instead of a comfortable life she could have!

  20. Hossp

    Said Ms. Ali:”When a moderate Muslim’s sense of compassion and conscience collides with matters prescribed by Allah, he should choose compassion.”

    Is this a political path?
    She is not asking people to organize or help the democratic forces in the Muslim countries. She is asking them to renounce their faith. As if renouncing the faith would be enough to cure every problem in the Muslim tribal societies.

    She is pushing a line that takes the blame off the rulers in many Muslims countries and puts it squarely on the Muslims living in Europe, US and many other countries.

    I have yet to see a statement or an article from her, censuring the US admin or the European countries to put the heat on Saudi Arabia, or Somalia or Sudan to change their laws.

    Strangely, the US in Pakistan is not even ready to support a Judiciary that defied the unconstitutional measures in Pakistan.

    Shaheryar,
    Some issues in the current world are political, some religious, and some just plain old greed for resources with terrorism mixed in for good measure. Just blaming the Muslim middle classes or the Moderates is not enough. In fact, when we do that in isolation, we are just using the whole thing for propaganda, rhetoric and building a case.

    Her association with the most conservative think tank in the US is suspicious too.
    Thanks.

  21. null

    Ayaan is not a muslim anymore.
    The site (http://www.aqoul.com) has a number of critiques of Ayaan ali and other “reformers” .
    It is not even a muslim site !!!
    But as usual sherryx has not even bothered to read it – so much for being broadminded and liberal.

    Secondly
    “But academically it can never be the sole system of thought on which others be judged.”
    Yeah academically it may not be the sole system of thought on which it may be judged.
    But it is the only one that really matters after all
    our goal is nearness to Allah and development of Taqwa. Other critiques would be useless on the Day of Qiyamah.
    No is denying that there are many problems within muslim societies. The issue is that people should follow Islamic teaching morally and the maqasids of shariah should be kept in mind.

  22. sherryx

    spare me this sheria , sunnah , taqwa story—

    @ Hossip, Isnt it the lesson of modernity. to choose ones conscience over religious text. If bible would have been chosen, could we have women working in Europe, could we have democracy?. if u recall days when Pope ruled europe. Imagine the chaos if bible was the law of land, imagine what would have happened to mosques, recall the burnings at stakes.
    you tell me Is it a political or Religious issue that a Ahmedi is sent to jail if he says “as salam u alikam”. if he says Kalima, which is article of his faith, if he goes to mosque.
    you tell me is it a religious or a political issue that Sunni tehrik kills a 22 y old hindu boy , gouges his eyes out, with iron rods in karachi?
    is this a religious or political issue that Jamat e aehl e hadees when standind up to women activists, Jilani and Madiha Gohar etc in lahore , chant “Amreki Kuttian” hai hai? forgive my language but this was shown in Geo as well.
    Is this a religious or political issue that in Pakistan laws exist which state two woman equals one man.
    Is this a religious or political issue that dozens of people accused of blasphemy have been murdered, even in jails and police custody. no one has ever been tried for this?
    Is this a political or religious issue that Islami Jamiiat e Talba destroyed Punjab University English department because they taught Alexander Pope’s “Rape of lock”
    Is it political or religious issue that Taliban rule NWFP, kiddnapping people, ordering schools to shut down, destroying buddha statues.

    How many news stories have u seen on these issues in Pakistani media? one two?
    why is this silence? because those who do all this have only one justification for their action

    Koran and Sunnah. things two sacred to question, hence the silence, thats why she is saying cross this taboo.
    and Try giving a statement in daily Nawa e Waqat on ending Aparthed laws for Ahmedis and just see what Tehreek e Khatam e Nabaut does to u. and than see how many Liberal Moderate moslem come to your help and how many intellectuals come to court in front of Manzoor Chinoti and tell what is True Islam, what Koran really means

    just try this, but i will say dont—-

  23. null

    We have to start from the very beginning :
    what is the purpose of our existence ?
    worship of Allah SWT
    Once we accept this and keep this in mind
    everything else falls into place
    Unfortunately ghaflah is common – hence the issues . Some forget this reality and hence go astray and then often try to lead others astray from the sirat a mustaqeem

  24. null

    “Isnt it the lesson of modernity. to choose ones conscience over religious text.”
    Yes modernity is wrong because it refuses to admit that the lower nafs can lead you to do wrong.
    We still remember the havoc the ‘progressive’ communists created in Russia ,Europe and Central Asia.
    Following the lower nafs can lead to problems which you cited above in your previous comment.

  25. sherryx

    As far as “existence” is concerned , Sartre and Camus explain it better than any divine book! my personal assessment!

    SA

  26. sherryx

    you remember the havocs of communists and i remember the havocs moslem caliphate played, the nearest being the genocide in Arminia and Greece by Othaman caliphate!!!

  27. null

    ya that happened when the progressive young turks were ascendent within the establishment by the way i forgot cambodean pol pot thank god communism is largely dead good riddance to bad rubbish

  28. null

    As far as “existence” is concerned , Sartre and Camus explain it better than any divine book! my personal assessment!

    That is why you are so wrong
    Instead of taking the Prophet (SAW),the sahaba,
    the righteous ulema (like Imam Ghazali RA) and the Awliya as your inspiration you inspiration are silly philosphers and writers
    This is not your fault because islamic philosphy is not even taught to students .

  29. sherryx

    Islamic Philosophy, lol, what do u know bout it. from Ibn e Sina to Ibn e Rushed, every single moslem philosopher were beaten , put into prison, for their philosophy !! by sultans a mullahs

  30. null

    The others were Greek inspired
    Not everything from a muslim is islamic
    I am talking about Imam Ghazali (RA) and others
    What about Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (RA) or Imam Abu Hanifa (RA) who were also imprisoned ?

  31. sherryx

    Hanbal and Hanifa were “fakiehs”, not philosophers. and these were too beaten by moslem state.

    Ibn e Ghezlai ki books were also banned by Qazi Aiyad

  32. null

    yeah but since they were righteous ,their ideas survived and they were one of the mechanisms through which the Deen survived and stayed on the Sirat a Mustaqeem

  33. null

    Written in a different context but true here :

    The biggest difference between a Muslim and non-Muslim is their Weltanschauung. It is so utterly different and in the case of the Muslim, so engrossing and all-encompassing that it becomes a veil between him and the rest of humanity. I don’t mean that in a negative sense. Muslims simply do not realize what it’s truly like living in a world of meaning and metaphor that precludes the commandments of God. It is this differing world view that separates a believer from a non-believer; the greatest hurdle for true understanding between the two. That is one of the reasons why Sunni fiqh designed for western societies must scale not only the mountain of internal historical consistency in the face of modernity but also the mountain of establishing legal guidelines in conversation with people who cannot fathom an entire society still built around God.

    It is foolish to think however that either is on the verge of collapse. Huntington was on to something [even though I don’t think he got it all right]. I am a true believer in Richard Bulliet’s view that a civilization of Islamo-Christian co-existence is only a matter of time. However, I also see an ocean of considerable ignorance that animates discourses in both universes. On the whole, whether we will continue to antagonize each other or not is a choice that lies in our very own hands.

    From :
    http://molvi.wordpress.com/2007/04/06/parallel-universes/

  34. null

    Even later people like shiekh Ahmad (RA) sirhindi ,shah waliullah (RA) and the various awliya writings and malfoozat literature.

  35. sherryx

    It is time to read the passage you your self wrote! why moslem has to be identified with a segregationist world view?

  36. null

    I did not write this myself I just quoted it
    You ask why ? Because we have been created by Allah SWT for no other purpose to worship Him so as far as possible we should be seek Allah’s pleasure and guidance in every sphere of our lives.
    In your westernized world view, Allah is marginal while in our world view it is central

  37. null

    Our world is increasingly peopled by those who are attracted to the idea of religion and some of its sensations and identities but boldly resist the notion that religion has a path and has terms. A supersized, duty-free zone has been hewn in which people may comfortably ignore or rebuke core tenets and principles of a faith but insist to define themselves by it or, more severe, define it according to themselves.

    What seems like hypocrisy here is actually something else, for the issue is not duplicity per se or of poseurs covering an inner lie. Nor is it a matter of confusion caused by conflicting texts or competing sacred paradigms. It is a daylight mindset that falls under the awning of “postmodernism,” an overused catchall term that points to a manner of thought at odds with such venerable aspects of human life as religion and tradition, and has seeped nearly everywhere, including the House of Islam, one particular aspect about it.

    With roots in literary criticism and architecture, the main lecture of postmodernism is that there is no essential narrative of life that has an unchanged interior. Like a John Barth or Kurt Vonnegut narrative, life’s story is so desperately tethered to its “modernities” or implausible circumstances, to apply it foreverly is a kind of autocracy against which postmodernism vaguely leads the revolt. While this is intriguing on certain levels (especially in context-driven legislation), the problem, however, is in the raucous handling of the essence of religion and postmodernism’s curious and attractive power (fools gold maybe) it offers to people to decide on their own who God is (if that belief keeps some meaning) and what He asks of us and how we determine that.

    Postmodern handling of Islam is clearest when it comes to the person of the Prophet Muhammad, from within and without. We see some of it now, as Muslims chat with pom-pom laxity about the authenticity of hadith and the Prophet’s role as teacher and lawgiver. They unwittingly borrow arguments of mainly dead, well-bred, futilitarian Orientialist scholars, like Goldziher, Juynboll, Schacht, and their incarnations (“higher critics” as Arberry calls them in disparagement). Or they parrot tautologies cultured in the former, and now aging, departments of Soviet atheism—once fervently espoused by Arab Marxists as they sipped gin in Damascus or Cairo cafes within eyeshot of Soviet military advisors. (People old enough and who have lived in the region may remember this.) Postmodern arsonists need to torch the validity of the Prophet’s Sunna, the normative prophetic behavior, because, frankly, it’s in the way; because it is the thing that gives color, timelessness, and definition to the final spiritual arc of the religion project, known as “Islam.” To confuse the matter, postmodernists sometimes insist on their “Islam” by demonstrating what they believe is their attachment to the Quran, a book that plainly cannot be understood without the Prophet on one’s shoulder.

    The ordering principle of life, for a believer, is the existence of God, His oneness and incomparability, and humanity’s constant state of return to Him. But ordering principles have problems surviving without a path, an identifiable and ritualistic way in which the subscribers of the Principle decide to take. In other words, Truth (in human trust) requires something to do, something that brings meaning and definition to one’s day. The human creature has an inner, abstract world and also an outer organic “body” that functions in space and time. It makes no sense that revealed religion would neglect the latter and speak only to abstract sciences and heady discussions (popular in freshmen dormitories). It is implausible to expect belief to survive internment in the heart with no external “visible” signs.

    There’s a reason that entry into the fold of Islam passes through a dual testimony, a simple catechism in which one first affirms the oneness of God and His sole right of worship, and then accept and “witness” or “testify” to the authentic role of a man, a mortal, as His messenger and prophet, whose teachings unpack scripture but also define what it means to believe and what it means to live this way in a limited earthly life. It is inconceivable that religion would be revealed to the world without a path, and this path would be without a teacher, whose path far outlives him. This teacher would not only receive missives from God Himself and experience revelation and given leave to penetrate some of the mysteries of the dominion (malakût) and be honored to see the sacred in what normally passes as profane, like eating with a certain hand, donning a shirt in a certain way, or bowing down to the earth whispering certain words that unlock secrets that can only be learned through revelation and taught by one who experienced it, with proscriptions and obligations that do nothing but help a person’s knock on God’s door be answered. He teaches what can be passed down to those who understand the necessity of preservation. When the last Messenger passed away, the task to record and preserve his teachings became the most compelling emergency, not because of local climes or habit, but because the loss would have been irreparable.

  38. sherryx

    try to write what u think, dont quote things that dont mean any thing with regard ur opinion

  39. sherryx

    Who ever wrote this, i wonder at his mind, he even knows what post modern thought means, its suspicion of universals , religion is the first of these.
    this really is no service to religion

  40. null

    because he writes better than me

  41. null

    because modernism post modernism is silly nonsense all clever words dreamt up by immoral men blinded by their nafs and iblis

  42. sherryx

    Issi liye u r copying non sense?

  43. null

    Are you not the one who iss is advocating nonsense derived from third rate people like Camus and Satre ?

  44. Sherry: I think this debate should end now.

    Null: You have had your say in full measure and there is disagreement between the two positions that you and Sherryx take.

    THe civilised way is to agree to disagree now and refrain from further personal arguments.

    Furthermore, it would be helpful if you were to use your name to post comments. Why take cover under ‘Null’ – it sort of diminishes the force of your arguments.