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Books and Documents

Islam and Sectarianism

Pakistan Waging Dirty War on Its Balochs
Makhan Saikia
Pakistan Waging Dirty War on Its Balochs
Makhan Saikia

The continued slaughtering of the minority Hazaras, Shias and currently the Punjabis, either by the Taliban or by the extreme sectarian groups like the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ), is further complicating the situation in Balochistan. Indeed the outfits like the LeJ are committed to eliminating the minorities like the Hazaras from the face of the country and the Pakistani State is a mute spectator....

 

Since there is an urgent need, and minorities have a longstanding demand, now even the Senate committee has once again recommended that instead of blaming media and NGOs for defaming Pakistan, government must bring this matter to parliament, and introduce legislation to stop the ongoing forced conversion of girls and women belonging to minority religions...

 

The Ahmadiyya community regards its founder, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian in Punjab, as a prophet and, for that reason; mainstream Muslims do not recognise them as a part of their community. But the fundamental declaration of faith in Islam — there is none to be worshiped but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet — does not expressly say that Muhammad was the “last” prophet....

“The main victims of this violence are the people of Balochistan who are being systematically targeted by paramilitary groups, allegedly sponsored by the Pakistani authorities. Extra-judicial killings and enforced disappearances are the most common practices,”....

 

Today, Iran uses Hazara Shias as cannon fodder to fight its war in Syria. Poor Afghan Hazaras residing in Iran are offered Iranian citizenship to fight in Syria. While some Afghans are offered carrots, others are offered sticks. There are indications others—including poor, illegal workers in Iran—are compelled to go fight in Syria....

 

Unfortunately, far from being challenged, the “Shias versus Sunnis” theme is still lazily rehearsed in much of the mainstream media. But while the mainstream media fails to challenge IS’s sectarian propaganda, Iraqi activists, bloggers, and citizens are constantly trying to establish a counter-narrative, encouraging a language of unity and highlighting national identity beyond ethnicity or religion....

 
Strife within Different Streams of Islam
Makhan Saikia
Strife within Different Streams of Islam
Makhan Saikia

The so-called guardians of the two prominent branches of Islam, Iran and Saudi Arabia, by now, must call for a political truce; else, once known as one of the rare cradles of human civilisation, the nations of the Middle East will soon turn out to be a graveyard for sure....

The Nation State’s Fatal Defect
Khaled Ahmed
The Nation State’s Fatal Defect
Khaled Ahmed

The process of “expelling the trash” goes on among many nations. It is visible as is intolerance in India these days but without the sanction of law. Many nations have done it in the past through “pogroms” and concentration camps, but in the 21st century it is the Muslim state that is particularly afflicted by it, at times under law but also with impunity....

 
Making Art from Pakistan’s Chaos
Aatish Taseer
Making Art from Pakistan’s Chaos
Aatish Taseer

Pakistan, founded in 1947 as a homeland for India’s Muslims, once had a very strong identity. But it has been discredited, at first through successive military coups that undermined civilian governments, and later through terrorism, insurgency and the vanishing writ of the state from great sections of the country....

 

"My main intention was to objectively address as many key issues as possible that one sect may have towards the other sect, and then break down the misconceptions so that some kind of bridge could be built once they realise they have so much in common"....

 

Ahmadis differ with other Muslim sects over the finality of Prophet Muhammad as the last Prophet. The Ahmadi branch of Islam was founded on March 23, 1889, by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in Qadian town of pre-partition Punjab. They believe in the Prophethood of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, and have endured discrimination and violent persecution for holding this belief....

 
Ahmadi Embarrassment
Khaled Ahmed
Ahmadi Embarrassment
Khaled Ahmed

Pakistan was created in the name of Islam because all Muslims in south Asia presumably felt like a nation. No one bothered to check if there were any footnotes to this feeling. But soon after they got Pakistan, Muslims started feeling odd living together. The first “exception” were the Ahmadis...

 
The Barelwi-Deobandi Truce? More Than Meets The Eye
Arshad Alam, New Age Islam
The Barelwi-Deobandi Truce? More Than Meets The Eye
Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

Thus behind the veil of protecting Muslim youths framed up on terror charges, something much more fundamental may be going on. Both the Deobandi and the Barelwi leadership derive much of their legitimacy and power from being the custodians of the Muslim religious sphere. Any challenge to their understanding of Islam is a direct challenge to their religious authority and therefore it is no wonder that the erstwhile enemies are now talking to each other.

 
Pakistan’s Non-Muslims and Muslims: Equal Citizens, Eh
Yaqoob Khan Bangash
Pakistan’s Non-Muslims and Muslims: Equal Citizens, Eh
Yaqoob Khan Bangash

Yet most Pakistanis are not even bothered to treat them equally, let alone better. Pakistanis are often quick to come out on the streets to protest atrocities against Muslims elsewhere, be it the atrocities being committed in Palestine, Burma or Kosovo (and I am not criticising that!), yet they are quiet when their own co-citizens are abducted, forcibly converted, falsely charged with blasphemy, raped and abused,,,

However, that night at Nankana Sahib, I had placed myself for the first time in the shoes of the religious minorities and tried to feel, if only for a fleeing moment, what they feel every time they are refused at a restaurant or offered special utensils which they are expected to clean themselves...

 

How it was forcibly annexed to Pakistan, how the freedom movement there was brutally crushed and leaders like Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti murdered by the Pakistani state is another sordid story...

 
Are Ahmadis Muslims? Let Us Ask Prophet Muhammad (saw)
Kashif N. Chaudhry
Are Ahmadis Muslims? Let Us Ask Prophet Muhammad (saw)
Kashif N. Chaudhry

I call on such Muslim bodies to see the beauty in diversity and appreciate the value in embracing pluralism and inclusivity within Islam. I call on them to the ways of Prophet Muhammad. When it came to him, it was quite clear who must be counted with the Muslims: Anyone who claimed to be one. And who actually was a true Muslim from within? He let God be the judge of that!....

Related Article:

Muslim Juhala threaten Mayawati government over Ahmadiya issue

The Spiritual Genocide of a Godly people: the Case of Ahmadis in Pakistan

Anti-Ahmadism In India

The Middle East: Beyond the Sectarian Divide
Hayder al-Khoei
The Middle East: Beyond the Sectarian Divide
Hayder al-Khoei

In 2006, when Shia tribes in Iraq wanted to retaliate after Salafi-jihadists demolished a sacred shrine, Grand Ayatollah Sistani, Iraq’s highest religious authority, told the Shias that the 'Sunnis are ourselves, not just our brothers'. Sunni tribes also aggressively fought and almost defeated Al-Qaeda in Iraq, an earlier incarnation of ISIS....

Think, dear patriotic Pakistanis, before you share photos of Israeli terror and Donald Trump and Bharatiya Janata Party and Muslims in Burma and Yemen and Syria. Think of all those poor, terrified, silent Christians who do not know what their crime is living in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Think of every mullah who has tried to hijack power in our country....

 

The factions in conflict—a polite word for acrimony and divisions—under the umbrella of the very Deen that instructs them that they are committing shirk by rejecting the commandment of God, in whom they believe, that is, they have Iman:

30-31…do not be of those who are polytheist-mushrik......

As Muslims, we already have enough Islamophobia and religious misunderstandings to occupy our lives until the end of time. Therefore the misunderstandings and bigotry that happen within our own communities is baffling and honestly quite sad...

 

Was this country only made for Muslims? Do we, Christians, have no right to live our lives? Will justice be done? Is this a safe place for our children? I am familiar with government-issued statements that minorities have been given equal rights; some minority parliamentarians are doing the same. Moreover, some so-called patriots try to show their loyalty by criticising and alienating others....

 
Sunni Muslim, Is That Who I Am?
Dr. Mike Ghouse
Sunni Muslim, Is That Who I Am?
Dr. Mike Ghouse

First of all, Prophet Muhammad knew only one group of people; Muslims! Prefixes like Sunni, Shia, Ahmadiyya, Bohra, Ismaili, WD Muhammad, Alawaite, Deobandi, Barelvi, Ahl-e-Hadith, Ahl-e-bait etc., were not in his vocabulary nor can anyone ascribe these words to him – he did not use them. ....

I am proud that an Ahmadi in Pakistan strengthened my faith more than any Maulvi could, that a Hindu in Pakistan showed me the art of coexistence finer than a Muslim here could and that a Pakistani Christian taught me the value of prayer better than any preacher could.....

 
Gilgit-Baltistan: Progressive Marginalization
Ajit Kumar Singh
Gilgit-Baltistan: Progressive Marginalization
Ajit Kumar Singh

Despite decades of military subjugation, demographic engineering, and the ceding of some territories and influence to China, Islamabad has failed to win the support of the people of GB. Its further militarization of the region perpetuates a strategy of indiscriminate use of force to silence local voices, even as local populations are progressively marginalized.....

 
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NEW COMMENTS

  • Good column! Jamelle Bouie is a very valuable acquisition for NYTimes' op-ed page.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Let us fight this oppression rather than talk about who is more responsible for it
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • When governments pander to orthodoxy, they make good governance impossible.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • @Mohammad Hussain HINDUS HAVE ALWAYS LIVED IN HARMONY WITH ALL COMMUNITIES. TROUBLE SHOOTERS GET WHAT....
    ( By Dev Soni )
  • @Na H Il FACTS ARE BASED ON COMMON SENSE, WHICH IS MOST UNCOMMON WITH PEOPLE WHO USUALLY BRUSH IT ASIDE.
    ( By Dev Soni )
  • @ Dev Lmao even rioters nd supporters of mass murderers look concerned abt "harmony" No one can handle...
    ( By Mohammad Hussain )
  • @Dev Soni I would really like to know the fact....
    ( By Na H Il )
  • MADRASSAS ARE THE ROOT CAUSE OF RELIGIOUS FANATICISM AND SHOULD BE BANNED FOR RELIGIOUS HARMONY.
    ( By Dev Soni )
  • Iam humbly requesting all the learned friends please don't waste...
    ( By Attaullah Mahdi )
  • In India secularism means that tolerance of atrocity and exploration...
    ( By Satchidananda Mishra )
  • I think this is the best way to make presence on fb
    ( By Madhukar Sibal )
  • If any nation wants to learn how to treat a minority in times of need, please....
    ( By Ghulam Hussain )
  • Madarasas will flourish till the day of judgement. The critics and anmeies...
    ( By Ashiq Dar )
  • “It is reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Surely, in the body there is a small piece of flesh....
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • This write-up points out to us a very deplorable situation developing in Pakistan. Pakistan has done practically nothing to....
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • Fully agree that "Oppression of Women Has Nothing to Do With Islam Rather It Is the Consequence of Cultural Practices"
    ( By Kaniz Fatma )
  • The usual meaningless whataboutery from Hats Off!'
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off maliciously exaggerates "muslim sense of entitlement. and of course their inbred hatred of idolaters and polytheists, ....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • by the where were you hiding after the lahore church blast? and under which stone....
    ( By hats off! )
  • islamophobia is the best defence against the islamic/muslim sense of entitlement...
    ( By hats off! )
  • sahih muslim 4-1039. so that is what the favorite wife of the prophet said...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Your criticism of Qutb was lukewarm but your support is firm.....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Only the ignorant hatemongers still continue to badmouth CAIR...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • You read the Quran as a slavish literalist but you do not have the wisdom to see....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • You don't even have the sense to see that Pamela Taylor is not a critic of Islam...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • My question arose from your self-invented hypothesis that God sent subsequent....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Only a slavish literalist would call someone an apostate for rejecting words that insult....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Not only were Ilhan Omar's arguments valid, she knows the U.S. Constitution...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The ILO defines "gender equality" as follows: "Gender equality entails the concept....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • I wonder how GM sb is blind to my criticism of Syed Qutub. However, I will not throw out the baby with the....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • every facilitator of cair or stealth jihadis by definition speak the truth. just like the "moderates".
    ( By hats off! )
  • I say what Allah says in the Quran about the Quran and about His previous Books. I do not say anything....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • You are digressing. Pamela only sees problems and not solutions and the fact that the guidance....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • You are the one who raised the question and have the answer as to why the final revelations....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Are you asking questions or taking up a position ? You are rejecting the verses which makes you an apostate. You ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • most of the islamic terrorists quote either hadees or the qur'an. those quoting....
    ( By hats off! )
  • Naseer sb. asks, "What is your basic belief about verse 9:5 which...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sb. is now trying to use the Quran as a weapon of war against me....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sb, asks, "Has GM sb proved that any people of earlier scriptures ....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Without seeing a problem, how is one going to find a solution? As I said before...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )