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Books and Documents

Islamic Society

The findings of the survey are quite instructive. Muslims do not think that they are ‘very religious’. Instead, most of them feel that they may well be described as ‘somewhat religious’ (Table 1). This Muslim self-perception cannot simply be called a reflection of minority psyche....

 

Pakistan is trapped. Its top judiciary, when not manned by Islamists, lets the victims walk after an average period of six to eight years in jail. But a victim can get presented before a court manned by “pious” judges, in which case, he is sure to go to his death....

Even the great Kalidasa said “The place is more beautiful than heaven and is the benefactor of supreme bliss and happiness. It seems to me that I am taking a bath in the lake of nectar here.”...

 

“An attack on the sovereignty of madrasas” is how the All India Muslim Personal Law Board secretary described the suggestion to bring the Muslim religious schools under the Right to Education (RTE) act. Madrasas’ autonomy and independence guaranteed under Articles 29 and 30 of the Constitution will be threatened, Khalid Saifullah Rahmani said recently.

But, the question is what have Indian madrasas, where more than seven million children go for basic education, made of their autonomy? Even if one concedes that it is okay for them to teach just Islamiyaat, they must be asked what brand of Islam are they teaching these impressionable children?...

The Uighur people belong to the Turkic ethnic group native to the Altay Mountains in Central Asia, where they were dominant from the 8th century to the 18th century. The Manchu invasion in the 1800s and nationalist and communist forces from China and Russia have caused the Uighur culture to fall into decline….

The moral decay of the society can be gauged from the fact that callous killers are garlanded. Sometimes those involved in extrajudicial killing garner public esteem and appreciation. Recall the scenes of vandalism in the country, and hate speech against the judiciary, military, and government when Asia Bibi was acquitted of a blasphemy charge....

That Pakistan has a large number of vegetarians (Khushwant Singh, 2012) is a statement that doesn’t find many takers in India, until you visit the country and see it for yourself. Even I doubted the veracity of this claim. But I saw this on my innumerable visits to Pakistan as an advanced research scholar of Islamic theology, Hadith and Persian mysticism....

Ramzan fasting or Roza, practised by Muslims, is an elaborate process stretching over a period of one month every year. It is to do with self-reform, self-restraint and it also involves a wide range of responsibilities on the part of those who observe fasting....

 

Religious literalism, the primacy of the text and aggressive methods of proselytisation were becoming the principal features of religious discourse to which the traditional Sufism was an appendage now. Fadl-e-Haq Khairabadi (1797-1861) waged his jihad against the British in 1857. Haji Imdadullah Makki (1817-99) is another example of a Sufi who fought against the British....

 

The challenges come from a head-on collision between Ramadan and the materialism, consumerism and hedonism that have unfortunately engulfed Muslim societies. Approached correctly and observed diligently, the former could help us overcome the latter. In our present state of decay...

 

I recall one of my physician friends asking me this question at work around year 1984: “Hey Ejaz, are you an Islam? I smiled and said, “No, I am a Muslim”, leaving my friend a little bewildered. Fast forward to 2018. Islam and Muslims are no longer mixed up. However, Islam and Muslims remain rather poorly understood....

 

The Quran and Hadiths deal with sexual issues and the students and teachers of madrasas are aware of the injunctions of the Quran and Hadith on the subject..

So, how does anyone, much less a professor, promote views that are so clearly stated and so profoundly wrong? Two enquiries to Maszka received no response, so one can only speculate. Here is the logic that may explain his error...

Sufi writers of the post-Mughal period wrote essays venerating monarchy as equal to or even superior to prophecy. Najm al-Din Razi (d. 1256) actually claimed that a righteous king is a true vice-regent of God, and exhibits the divine attributes of His lordship....

 

We lament loudly and vocally, post social media pictures and demand action when people are killed in Palestine, in Syria, in Kashmir or Muslims are targeted in Western countries. We do not react at all when people, most of them Muslims, are mowed down at home....

“You can draw a line from the anti-Ahok rallies to the nomination of Maruf Amin in 2018,” said Andreas Harsono, a senior researcher with Human Rights Watch in Jakarta. “Jokowi needed not just Muslim credentials, but Islamist credentials,” he said, distinguishing between the religion and its specifically political applications....

This time, it was not the spiritual or social connections that took me there. It was to convince myself of my own resilience. And there was indeed strength in being united — even amidst fear, worry and tears....

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s lawmaker Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, who founded the Pakistan Hindu Council, goes back in history to blame General Zia-ul-Haq for the present plight of minorities in Pakistan. “Minorities started to feel like ‘minorities’ during his time...

“In the 1990s, when it felt like Malaysia and Indonesia were seeing more relaxed attitudes about social conventions, Brunei was already exercising very tight state control over religious interpretation and practice.”...

 

“Polygamy is not an absolute right,” he said. “It is restricted by a number of conditions, on top of which is fairness. Otherwise, it is not permitted.” As expected, a heated debate ensued. ...

At the time of mounting on Buraq, it began to show disobedience and Gabriel hit it and told it, “Be calm o Buraq! Previously no prophet has ever mounted on you and in the future, no one like him would ever ride you.”...

 

“What words adequately express the pain and suffering of 50 men, women and children lost, and so many injured? What words capture the anguish of our Muslim community being the target of hatred and violence? ...

 

The two sister’s forceful conversion to Islam has shown how religious zealots turned her body into a mute token of male honour, bereft of the ability to speak for herself. Finally, social workers in Sindh confirm that a portion of these incidents consist of women who willingly leave their homes to marry into Muslim families. Such incidents of female agency also need to be considered when dealing with cases of forced conversion....

In this time of the Muslims practising generosity, compassion and patience, mosques should refrain the broadcast of the loud recitation of the Quran during the Tarawih prayers as it could disturb the neighbourhood. I am sure God can listen even when we recite our prayers softly....

 
Right of Parents and Disobedient Sons in Islam
Right of Parents and Disobedient Sons in Islam
Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi, New Age Islam

In spiritual observation substantiated by Islamic teachings, one idea comes across that only God Almighty can give our parents their deserving due and reward. However we should do take care of their rights and perform our duties, to the best of our capacity, as the Quran says, “Allah tasks no soul beyond its capacity” (2:286/2:33/6:152/7:42/23:62)....

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