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Islam and Sectarianism

And yet this question is raised again and again. To some extent this has its roots in the very genesis of Pakistan. When you create a country for “Muslims” and moreover try to form a constitution in the light of Sharia, with clauses that actually prevent Non-Muslim to be the Head of the State, then perhaps defining a Muslim becomes inevitable….

 

Imagine Jinnah alive in 2016. If you can do this, then it should not be hard to also imagine this: a video statement of a cleric would have appeared on social media sites in which the pious gentleman would have exhibited great concern about the founder of Pakistan being a Twelver-Shia....

 

“Acknowledging Dr Salam is long overdue but it is a good thing on the part of the government,” said Saleem-ud-Din. “They should acknowledge the true heroes of Pakistan.” When asked about the incidents that followed the announcement, he is careful not to make any assertions but merely point to facts. “I cannot connect the two events but all I can say is that the raid at Rabwah and Dr Salam being honoured happened on the same day and both actions were taken by the government.”....

This dramatic change did not happen because Turkey’s Sunni Islamists suddenly became sectarian after a theological soul-searching. It happened because of a major political drama they witnessed: the Syrian civil war. From the beginning of the war in spring 2011, both the Turkish government led by Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the Islamists in its base focused on the brutality of the Syrian regime over its people — especially the Sunni opposition...

 

For about a century now, followers of Ahmadiyya community have been ostracised for an interpretation of Islam that differs from traditional orthodox positions. Ahmadis say their faith has been misinterpreted by mainstream Muslims and clerics intent on persecuting them....

To Win Its War on Terror, Pakistan Must Accept Ahmadis as Muslims
Kunwar Khuldune Shahid
To Win Its War on Terror, Pakistan Must Accept Ahmadis as Muslims
Kunwar Khuldune Shahid

Takfir, the act of declaring an individual or a group outside the fold of Islam, is the founding principle of jihadism. This is why most of the victims of jihadist terror are Muslims who are deemed not Muslim enough. As long as the Pakistani Constitution indulges in Takfir, the state can never claim to challenge jihadist ideology. Pakistan’s fight against terror, therefore, hinges on the state accepting Ahmadis as Muslims....

Ahmadi Muslims recite the Kalima (a Muslim’s principle creed), pray facing Mecca five times a day and assiduously follow the Quran. However, unlike other Muslims, Ahmadi Muslims also believe that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who founded the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in 1889, is the promised Muslim Mahdi and messiah the Prophet Muhammad foretold would come to guide Islam back to its true path. That belief is criminal in Pakistan...

Sociological polity and unexpressed aspects - Sindhi and Baloch today have transformed into modern social and cohesive entities, as they were historically. However, the linguistic, ethnic and sub-cultural additions that were resulted by the partition of British India, and after the creation of Pakistan, initiated the process of integration in the societies....

 

Balochistan and Sindh freedom movements, in association with war in Balochistan, have been oldest if compared with liberation movement of East Pakistan, now Bangladesh. Freedom movement for Gilgit-Baltistan, to create Balawaristan, has been addressed by creating Gilgit-Baltistan administrative unit...

 

Borrowing words from G. M. Syed, Sindh is a historical country; nation; and the freedom of Sindh is possible, and can be claimed unavoidable. I add with due permission from G. M. Syed that Sindh is also a Sovereign State. Sindh State has evolved through thousands years of Kingdoms/Emirate and finally modernized under colonial Britain like united India, after having more than a dozen treaties and instruments signed between Sovereign Kingdom of Britain and Emirate of Sindh....

 

The real issue is that Pakistan’s treatment of its minorities is a reflection on itself, its identity and its people — as a whole. Pakistan is a country which is constantly at war with itself. As one commentator once mentioned, Pakistan is a country which threatens by not point a gun at the other but at its own head — its Pakistan’s implosion which threatens world peace more than its war with any of its neighbours. ...

 
Discrimination against Minorities in Pakistan
Yasser Latif Hamdani
Discrimination against Minorities in Pakistan
Yasser Latif Hamdani

This raises bigger questions, however. Pakistan is a nation state and Pakistan’s army is a national army. Why must the question of religion come up in the appointment of the army chief? The right wing disagrees. They say that Pakistan is an Islamic state and all main offices of the state must be held by Muslims, who fulfil the official definition of what a Muslim is...

An Attempt to Understand Ahmadiyyas
Asif Merchant, New Age Islam
An Attempt to Understand Ahmadiyyas
Asif Merchant, New Age Islam

It is true that in many ways, Muslims are being led astray by those who should be guiding them on the right path. New Age Islam also has the same mission in its own way. Surely this cannot disqualify Ahmadiyyas from being accepted as Muslims. Most of the opponents of Ahmadiyyas are those who seem to have gone astray. Even someone like Abubakar Baghdadi is accepted as a Muslim, though what he stands for is the complete opposite of what the Holy Prophet taught. Mainstream Muslims should rethink the whole issue and try to form an independent judgement about Ahmedis....

Sectarian War in Pakistan and Urdu Media's Narrative of Denial
Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi, New Age Islam
Sectarian War in Pakistan and Urdu Media's Narrative of Denial
Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi, New Age Islam

Some of them even make a mockery of the Sufi denomination, blatantly emboldening the sectarian war-mongers in the country. A fatwa-factory declaring the Sufi practices as 'Haram' (forbidden in Islam), 'Bid’at' (un-Islamic innovation) and 'Mushrikana Rasm' (heretical practice) can be seen in the mainstream Urdu media in Pakistan, let alone the social networking sites. This is how the country's Urdu media is radicalising the common Muslim viewers and readers who are already influenced by the sectarian tendencies....

The ideological insecurity of the Sunni-dominated northern establishment should never be taken for a threat to state security. How could the "roar of the words", for which the Shia clerical establishment is famous all over the world and which is replicated in Nigeria by the equalitarian, republican sermons of the Islamic movement of Nigeria, constitute a threat to state security?....

 

Mosque officials say some 120 families have been moved to buildings nearby, while others have left to try to go home. Plenty remain, crowded into a row of shelters crafted from fencing, trees, blankets, corrugated metal, and in one case what appears to be a billboard for a pricey Calvin Klein watch....

 

In a nearby prefab shelter, Fazih, weathered and sun-beaten, isn’t sure of his age but recalls fleeing so-called Islamic State after months of surviving on animal feed. He tells how the men of his village waved their white undershirts in the air at the advancing Iraqi army....

 
Pakistan: More Smoke and Mirrors
Tushar Ranjan Mohanty
Pakistan: More Smoke and Mirrors
Tushar Ranjan Mohanty

Sectarian violence in Karachi is just another chapter in Pakistan's long history of violence against minorities. Sectarian strife has afflicted Pakistan virtually from the moment of its birth, but has escalated continuously since 1979, with the then President General Zia ul-Haq's 'Islamicisation' of Pakistani politics. Shias resisted this process as the 'Sunnification' of Pakistan, since most of the laws and regulations introduced were based on Sunni Fiqh....

 

Like many other segmented communities worldwide, the possibility of violent skirmishes is high in Nigeria for an array of reasons which are too numerous to mention here. One of these violent confrontations occurred between the state security forces and the Muslim-Shia group resulting in wanton destruction of lives and property with a confirmed death toll of about 348 Shiites...

We can present the argument to the growing followers of Ludhianvi and Hanafi that they are militants or radicals but to them they are religious activists and political leaders. They are seen as such because our political forces and military have treated them as such....

 

What I find extraordinary is the Muslim indifference towards Islam’s future, as if they couldn’t care less. A standard smug reaction is that all religions, notably Christianity, have gone through upheavals and emerged stronger. So will Islam; a “new” Islam fit for the 21st century will emerge from the debris of the old.

I am a citizen of an Islamic republic where five-year-old girls are raped, where women are traded like a commodity, where lust is stronger than the religion that claims to hold the country together. I am citizen of a country that lost its innocence in infancy....

 

In today’s politically correct hyper-humanitarian world (wait until the end of the sentence) a scholar wouldn’t sleep the night if he implied that a group of innocent people deserved to be blown to pieces because of their apparent religio-political alignment. The escape route for such scholars is silence. This is not the silence of a mourner seeking seclusion for the passing of his beloved. It is one of satisfaction. It is one of sanctioning.....

 

The silence is truly deafening. But more so, the silence from Muslim leaders and communities across the world is heart breaking. Shia Muslims are being left isolated when they are butchered. We forget that regardless of sects and ideologies, we all believe in the same God, we pray in the same direction and we all follow the same Prophet (pbuh).....

 

The New Testament seals the topic in these words: “Nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”(1 Corinthians 6:10.)

 In the Bhagavad Gita, the sacred book of Hindus, chapter 17, verses 8-10, it is said: “Food that promotes life, vitality, strength, health, happiness and satisfaction; which are succulent, juicy, nourishing and pleasing to the heart are dear to one in goodness. Food that are bitter, very salty, very sour, very hot, very pungent, very dry and burning causing unhappiness, misery and disease are palatable by one in passion. The food that is stale, tasteless, putrid, decomposed, foul and impure, as well as the leavings of others, is dear to one in nascence.”....

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