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Books and Documents

Islamic Society

Faiz Ahmed Faiz: Myriad New Meanings of Love and Protest
Faiz Ahmed Faiz

What is the secret of Faiz’s phenomenal appeal? Is he the greatest poet after Ghalib? No, certainly not. What makes him immensely popular is his revolutionary romanticism, his successful transformation of the traditional symbology of the Urdu poetry to convey myriad new meanings of love and protest. Noorjahan, Begum Akhtar, Mehdi Hasan, Iqbal Bano and Nayyara Noor were among those singers who made a significant contribution by taking Faiz’s poetry to the people.....

 

I Took the Risk to Visit Pakistan and Paid a Price
Firoz Bakht Ahmed

 “My dear brothers, today you are leaving our country; did you ever think what will be the outcome of this? If you go away, Muslims in India will become weak. You will be divided into two sects of liberals and fundamentals. Listen to me carefully, a Hindu can differ with your religion but they can’t differ within your Qaumiyat (clan), but in Pakistan you will face the difference of the clan as they’ll treat you as chattel.”

 Pakistan is a hell for Indian Muslims! I took the risk to visit that country despite these prophetic words and paid a price....

 
The Madrasa Myth
Moin Qazi, New Age Islam

The Madrasa Myth
Moin Qazi, New Age Islam

Madrasas across the world have suffered great loss of reputation in recent decades, thanks to a wave of extremism. They have been malicious projected as incubators of holy warriors or what has been derisorily called as ‘jihad machines’.  However, the negative stereotypes that we get to read in sections of the media do not present the true picture. The majority of madrasas actually present an opportunity, not a threat. For young village kids, they may be their only path to literacy. For parents mired in poverty, madrasas serve a vital role in ensuring their children are supervised, fed and taught. Madrasas fulfil a vital function by helping   develop a core of   leaders capable of leading the Muslim community in religious matters ...

To ensure that the supposed requirements of chastity are met, women are threatened with cultural notions such as Izzat or are spoon-fed with religious verses that have been taken out of context and skewed by misogyny. It’s almost like leaping right into 18th-century drama with all the talk of chastity and female conduct. But this is here and now. Hence, relationships, mixed interactions, sexual relationships all happen behind closed doors....

The Imam of True Sufism: Imam Junaid Developed the Sufi Doctrine Of Fana And Baqa, That Came To Define The Sufi Philosophy
Sadia Dehlvi

Upon the insistence of the ruling caliph, Junaid was amongst those signed the death warrant of the Sufi martyr Mansur Hallaj for saying, “Ana’l Haq”, or “I am the Truth”. Junaid wrote, “We judge according to the external law, as for the inward truth, God alone knows!” Hallaj, the most controversial of all Sufis had been his student. Junaid had counselled Hallaj to act with restraint or else his goblet would be stained with blood....

Atheists Too Have a Right to Live In This World
H Farook

In a Facebook post on March 13, Farook had said: “I am an enemy of god, enemy of religion and enemy of caste. But I am not an enemy of humans who believe in humanity.” On her sixth birthday on December 6, Farook had asked his daughter, Anafa to hold up a placard which said Kadavul illai – there is no god. He posted the photo on Facebook....

Islam Is, At Its Heart, a Progressive and Humane Doctrine: We Must Show By Our Actions and By Our Arguments That It Is So
Yasser Latif Hamdani

We need to create Sir Syed Ahmad Khans, Chiragh Alis and Muhammad Iqbals of the future and this cannot be done if we handicap ourselves through an emotional and ill thought out decision. Instead of swimming against the tide, we should ride it. Where are the cyber wings of our think tanks and institutes? These cyber think tanks, when suitably armed with knowledge — both modern and traditional — can do a much better service to Islam than those who feel that the glory of Islam can only be served by banning and blocking. Let us fight this war pragmatically and rationally instead of emotionally. We need Hosh not Josh.....

Sufis Exemplified Their Faith in Its Simplicity and In Its Teachings of Love, Brotherhood and Equality
Aijaz Zaka Syed

And who’s going to stop this endless dance of death? From mosques to madrasas and from mourning Shias to Ahmadi shrines, no one is safe. And this is not a problem exclusive to Pakistan. For whatever reason, the cancer of extremism is fast eating into the vitals of the whole of Muslim world. In their long and eventful history, Muslims have never faced a greater challenge to their identity and existence....

On Wresting Control over Religious Discourse
Abdulrahman al-Rashed

They also use the injustice being done to some Muslims and use it to plant the seeds of extremism, which stays for a long time and eventually becomes a local culture. If you can imagine this, you can understand how extremism spreads and how terrorism emerged. You will also realize that fighting extremism is more important than fighting terrorism....

Islam and Family Planning In Pakistan
Samreen Shahbaz

Under Zia’s era, the establishment took it upon itself to “Islamise” state institutions and introduced a series of “regulative” and “puritanical” legal measures including restricting women to the “Char-Diwari” (four walls) of their homes and controlling women’s sexuality through introduction of Zina and Hudood Laws....

 

Should Muslims Believe In The Jinn? The Hard-Won Mujahid Reformation Movement Is In Danger of Being Undone
Prashanth MP

However, after less than a century of leading the Muslim community from the front, the Mujahid movement, the Salafi sect in Kerala, seems to have reached a dead end — some of them, who claim they too are following Salafi Manhaj (methodology), have declared that democracy and secularism are un-Islamic; others are unable to decide whether seeking help from the ethereal being jinn is allowed in Islam or whether Sehr (black magic) will have any effect on human beings.....

Basant: Does Pakistan Have Any Respect for Its Heritage, Culture, the Diversity and Beauty of the Country?
Kamila Hyat

Festivals and traditions, like the Dhamal at Sufi shrines, bind us together as a nation. Basant unites people across class, gender, language and social backgrounds. It is also very important from the province’s economic point of view. For these very reasons, we should be making every possible effort to save this custom. Basant had entered the list of global festivities at the time when it was removed from our lives. We must reclaim what has been lost....

Sufis — Men of Feelings
Sadia Dehlvi

He wrote how Allah’s attributes must be known by tasting the experience, and not just the word. So to know mercy we must be merciful, to know God’s justice we must be just. Just like if you tell someone what it is like to swim they will never truly know swimming until they have swam. Similarly, we will never know God until we have experienced what it is to be merciful, just and compassionate.....

 

Let Us Celebrate Basant: It Is Time for Pakistan's Heart to Regain Its Soul
Mohammad Ali Ilahi

Basant marked the arrival of spring, and filled up Lahore’s skies with countless kites of varying colours and sizes. Yet, Basant has always been more than just kite flying. It served as a social gathering where all classes participated in the celebration. It involved music, food that Lahoris are known for and frequent cries of “Bo Kata”. My generation has been deprived of this history....

 

Is An 'Arab NATO' In The Works?
Ahmed Fouad

The protocol entrusted six essential tasks to the force, namely: intervene militarily to counter terrorist threats; participate in peacekeeping and security operations in the member states; help Arab countries restore, construct and equip their military and security capabilities; participate in securing relief and humanitarian aid operations in conflict zones; protect civilians against emergencies resulting from these conflicts or natural disasters; and protect maritime, land and air transport roads and fight piracy....

 

To Be a Real Cure for Extremism, Sufism Has To Return To Its Essence of Selfless Service

The glory of the Sufi past is something to be proud of. But it would not help much in dealing with nihilistic ideologies that drive terrorist groups like IS. Sufis were practitioners of love, who won over people with their selfless service to humanity, aversion to materialism and distance from the corrupting influence of power. They were exceptional scholars of Islam too....

 

Are Sufis Essentially Non-Violent?
Naveed Hussain

Having said that, I think Qadri’s act shouldn’t be a surprise. Qadri, in his own words, was motivated by a sermon of a local imam. The government should, at least, monitor Friday sermons at all mosques. This is essential to check hate-preaching and extremism which has become an existential threat for Pakistan.....

Thomas Aquinas regarded blasphemy a major unforgiveable sin, more grave than murder. Meanwhile, blasphemy against God and the Church was a crime punishable by death in much of the Christian world. The Quran and the authentic teachings of the Prophet Muhammad describe the practice of showing disrespect or mockery to God and His messenger as acts of ignorance, deliberate provocation or hatred….

Dance of Love: Sufis Think Of Themselves as Lovers, With God as Their Beloved
Bina Shah

When we make an ‘other’ out of people, and distance ourselves from them, we drive out empathy and respect, an act that then makes violence against others possible. To get rid of terrorism in Pakistan, we have to first realise that with our words, we are all parents in its conception and midwives present at its birth....

Damadam Mast Qalandar Is a Cry of Rebellion against Established Orders
Suleman Akhtar

Qalandar rose up in defiance when some forms of Sufism were adopted by kings' courts and saints were awarded state titles. Damadam mast Qalandar is a raging cry of rebellion against tyranny of established orders.....

 

Doing the Dhamal: Advice for Those who after the Terrorist Attack at Lal Shahbaz’s Shrine, Focussed More on Condemning the Ecstatic Dance
Nadeem F. Paracha

Yet, during the period in which I had begun to somewhat discover the inner workings of what came to be known as Muslim Modernism, I continued to frequent the shrines of Sufi saints and joyfully partake in ceremonies such as the Dhamal. ....

 

Pakistan created Mujahideen during the US-sponsored anti-soviet war in Afghanistan from 1979-89 paving way for more deadly terrorist organisations like Taliban and Al-Qaeda. Pakistan had become a frontline state again during the war the US again sponsored, this time against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda after 9/11 attacks in 2001. Among the allies in the war against terrorism, Pakistan cannot be easily characterised as either friend or foe. The 3As are the pivotal power handling institution in Pakistan i.e. Allah, Army and America....

 

The Commercialisation of Islam
Khadija Ahmed

Music now also plays a big part in the commercialisation of Islam. Not so long ago, I discovered a group which identify themselves as the “Deen Squad”, a Canadian-based hip-hop duo, who are known for their Muslim covers of popular mainstream hits. Much of Muslim community disapprove with their use of music, dancing and the fact that their songs are remakes of mainstream songs usually associated with drugs, sex and money which they then convert and replace with ‘Halal lyrics’ I fear that in attempting to eradicate stereotypes, we may just be slowly eradicating our identity and creating our own new narrative where instead of self-expression, we’re self-moulding simply because it sells.....

Yemen: Art, Love, Bombs And Bans
Dorian Geiger

Yemen's revolution, which unfolded on streets across the country on the heels of the Arab Spring just over six years ago, largely inspired his brand of artistic activism. Subay was there with the people, protesting in the streets of Sanaa. Those blissful but fleeting moments were short-lived, as the revolution would soon turn into a full-blown civil war....

 

First and foremost it is interesting to note that each of the 5 biggest issues that you selected fall under our ‘values’; the aspects that govern our day-to-day lives, the aspects we dedicate time in our lives to; i.e. the ‘intrinsic’ stuff, the stuff that makes us ‘compatible’ or not. To understand this further I tend to use the phrase: “Matching / Mapping of Values is where compatibility occurs; personality is where attraction occurs; when opposites attract we attract NOT at the values level but at the personality level....

 
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NEW COMMENTS

  • Whosoever condemns  terrorism must be welcomed by all.  People trying to foster  universal brotherhood must be supported by....
    ( By Iqbal Husain )
  • Hats Off is out of his mind. Is there any ambiguity at all?.... 
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • A bunch of hardcore christian theologians says Hats Off! He is not only in denial but resorting to a blatant lie. I repeat that ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • “Why is the Sufi counter-narrative not effective enough to make a difference?” Sufi theologians need to do hard work. They must speak with one voice. The ...
    ( By Royalj )
  • Sir, In Sanatana Dharma (aka Hinduism), volumes have been written to establish that E:kam  e:va adviti:yam "One Only without a Second"....
    ( By Chilukuri Bhuvaneswar )
  • @DG Gyan Chandra Sikhism and Buddhism ? Reinterpretation and revision is the call of the hour.
    ( By Anand Kumar )
  • Let there be a 10 day seminar of the learned,men of knowledge.One side Ulemas of Sunni,Shiya or whomsoever....
    ( By DG Gyan Chandra )
  • Good info Mr Abbas. Thanks.'
    ( By Ajoy Chakra )
  • @Ajoy Chakra Turkey and Bosnia and If I am not wrong Azerbijaan too follow the policy of Secularism..' ..
    ( By Syed Arif Abbas Abdi )
  • A scholarly debate with an apostate would be a waste of time. A scholarly debate...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Extremism is the result of ignorance and inability to think for oneself. Forgetting the fundamental principles...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hadith tales, whether they be about Taif or Ghazwa-e-Hind, do not deserve our time...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Sufism is not Islam and against the teaching of Islam.In order to judge some thing as Islamic, it must....
    ( By Abu Basim Khan )
  • haha...offering water to tree of islam and secretly cutting its roots.....
    ( By Ahraz Mohiudin )
  • The coexistence and tolerance of Islam /Quran exposed in Islamic countries whereas same Islam adopt altogether ....
    ( By Vijay Tiwari )
  • But you are not opening eyes for 49th Imam and Fatimid khalifatullah Kareem Shah Al Hussaini led Islam??
    ( By Muhammad Mukhtar Alam )
  • Absolutely right@Iqbal'
    ( By Muhammad Shah Rukh )
  • @Dalchand Chauhan , you are as bigoted and fundamentalist as your sanghie friends like shaheen etc.'
    ( By Iqbal Husain )
  • @U P Ojha Sir, of course very nice guys are there but very few have guts to come forth rest maintain low profile by suppressing ...
    ( By Dalchand Chauhan )
  • The fact that this could be considered an act of apostasy must not be ruled out ... We have to appreciate reformers coming from the ...
    ( By Deepa Natarajan )
  • Chauhan sahb, 90 % of Indian muslin are illiterates and rest 80% are blind Orthodox....
    ( By U.p. Ojha )
  • @U.p. Ojha Dear sir, his(Sultan Shahin) job will be great only if he is listened, acted upon by the Muslim masses ....
    ( By Dalchand Chauhan )
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    ( By Muhammad Shah Rukh )
  • @Bijay Choudhary Sir,the word terrorism has been unfortunately labelled to Muslims. Why doesn't the Indian media call the Maoists ....
    ( By Aamirr Sohail )
  • @amirr Sohail America fought in Korea in Vietnam for years then why Vietnamese and Koreans did not took to terrorism. No ....
    ( By Bijay Choudhary )
  • @Bijay Choudhary  Islamic terrorism is only 20 years old and Quran is about 1400 years old. Do you still think that the ....
    ( By Aamirr Sohail )
  • Islam has survived on the strength of sword and fire ,war and hatred which are enshrined in Quoran. Unless ....
    ( By Bijay Choudhary )
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    ( By Jayaraman Subri )
  • Stop RSS terrorism first, your RSS terrorists are becoming prime minsters and minsters.' ....
    ( By Aamirr Sohail )
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    ( By Jayaraman Subri )
  • a bunch of biased hard core christian theologians are expected to support christian...
    ( By hats off! )
  • as usual mr. naseer ahmed proves his mastery over wilful ambiguity....
    ( By hats off! )
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    ( By Ali Siddiqui )
  • Ojha you are advised to study the Quran. You will get all the solutions of the problems...
    ( By Meraj Siddiqui )
  • @Mohammad Arif Ali Siddiqui And you are an idiot'
    ( By Ali Siddiqui )
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  • Whatever it is it SURELY not God revealed as being claimed, and can be modified...
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