Ahmed, New Age Islam
01 May 2019
the name of bringing back the Islamic Shariat, several groups are
actively engaged. The question is which Shariat? There is the stagnant Shariat
of the past based on paradigms of the previous scriptures and concocted Ahadith
antithetical to the letter and spirit of the Quran. It was this suffocating
Shariat that prevented adoption of the printing press by a couple of centuries
leaving us far behind Europe. It is the same Shariat that frowned on scientific
study and promoted obscurantism. It is this Shariat that invited the wrath of
Allah who inflicted colonial rule on us to give us a break from it so that we
could rebuild anew. Have we rebuilt anew based on a correct understanding of
the Quran dispensing with the paradigms of the previous scriptures and
concocted Ahadith? We have not. So, if we are hankering for the same
Shariat, is it to invite the wrath of Allah once again and have a foreign rule
imposed on us?
call is made in the name of restoring the ‘Sovereignty of Allah’! Is the
sovereignty of Allah subject to us humans proclaiming and establishing it?
Allah can any day impose his Will on us and take away from us our freedom and
autonomy which He did when he subjected us to colonial rule. Do not fall for
such misleading political slogans. Without doubt, we believe in following the Shariat
of Allah or the Deen of Allah, but what the Classical Islamic Fiqh teaches
us, is a hideous caricature of the Shariat of the Quran.
does the Shariat or the Deen of Allah mean to us as individuals? It is to
follow the commands of Allah in letter and spirit. No matter in which country
we live, except perhaps China and Russia, we can practice our religion. As an
individual, we need to follow the commands of Allah and do not for example,
commit adultery. Establishing the Quranic punishment for adultery is the duty
of the State and not of the individual. Even when such laws are established,
our religion does not encourage us to bring the guilty to punishment. As a
matter of fact, our religion actively discourages us from bearing witness, and
punishes the witnesses with 80 stripes if the guilt is not established with
four witnesses, even though it cannot be said that those who bore witness were
lying. The religion encourages us to correct the wrong doers but not to bring
them to punishment. We do not therefore become less Muslim, because the State
does not implement the Quranic laws, because even if it did, we will try to
correct the wrong doer rather than report to the authorities and bear witness
to get the guilty punished. This is however not understood by those who hanker
after the Shariat. The first thing that they do to prove that they have
established the “Sovereignty of Allah” is to inflict the harsh punishments
publicly on a large number of people.
What a hideous version of Islam these tyrants want to install!
is only when a large majority of Muslims bring the Quranic Shariat in their
personal lives that the laws of the State will change. Democracy is the best
way, the only way, and indeed the Islamic way to bring about change in a
religion that proclaims “let there be no compulsion in religion”. It cannot be
imposed through violence by pressure groups capturing political office. Without
exception, when they succeed, they impose a tyrannical rule.
so called Classical Islamic Shariat, is anything but Islamic, and deserved to
be uprooted through imposing colonial rule on us. What distinguishes the Quran
from all previous scriptures is the overarching rule “let there be no
compulsion in religion”. There can therefore be no law or rule forcing a Muslim
to pray or fast or for Muslim women to wear hijab or veil or to punish a Muslim
from leaving his religion. It is for the individual to decide what he or she
will or will not do without impinging on the rights of others or disturbing
Quranic Shariat Differs From The Classical Shariat On Every Subject. For
There is no punishment for homosexuality except strong Social disapproval and
punishment only for public acts of indecency.
There is no punishment for apostasy. There is no punishment for blasphemy and
heresy. There can be a law against disturbing of public order or inciting
hatred but not impinging on academic independence or right to criticism.
The Religion of Allah before and After the Quran
The Divorce process as per the Shariat of the Quran is different from classical
Read The Process for Divorce in the Quran
Classical Islamic fiq errs in the inheritance related calculations.
Errors of Classical Islamic Fiqh - Inheritance Related Calculations
Classical Islamic fiq errs on female witnessing.
Is A Woman’s Testimony Worth Half That of A Man?
The Rules of war are ill-defined in classical Islamic Shariat. There is no duty
imposed on the Muslims to subjugate non-Muslims and bring them under Islamic
Shariat. Read: The Principles of War from the Quran
The relationship with the ‘other’ or the non-Muslim is ill-defined in classical
Islam's Relationship With The Rest Of The Word - The Current
Problem Of Extremism In A False Ideology And The Antidote From An Authentic
Understanding Of The Truly Humanistic Message Of The Quran
8. Imposing ‘Jiziya’ on
non-Muslims was never a religious requirement even in the Prophet’s times.
Read: The Story of the Prophetic Mission of Muhammad (pbuh) From the
Qu’ran (Part 6): The People of the Book and Jiziya
individual Muslim needs to do is to study the Quran carefully and understand
how the bigoted Islamic scholarship has led us into a dead-end street, reject
the out-dated Classical Islamic Shariat which is based on concocted ahadith and
paradigms of the previous scriptures, and rebuild the Shariat afresh based on
an authentic reading of the Quran. This requires the democratic process. The
argument of how Islam got established in the past without the democratic
process is of no relevance. We do not have in our midst today, a Prophet
receiving divine revelations to guide us whom we can unquestioningly follow. We
have fallible human beings with a bigoted and tyrannical view of Islam, trying
to appropriate to themselves the power and position of a Prophet, and establish
their tyrannical rule.
Reject these pretenders.
We have the Quran, which is
understood differently by different people, and therefore, no single
individual, group, or sect, can have the authority to impose its view on the
rest. We have no choice but to follow the democratic process. As individuals
however, it is our duty to Allah, to read the Quran, understand it, and
implement it in our lives in the best manner possible, and also to teach and
promote it. We as a people, society, nation, and Ummah can succeed only when we
do what we need to do, as an individual first.
Naseer Ahmed is an Engineering
graduate from IIT Kanpur and is an independent IT consultant after having
served in both the Public and Private sector in responsible positions for over
three decades. He is a frequent contributor to NewAgeIslam.com
New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism
Zufiqar Haider sb, the only persons who can accept what I
say are those who are confident in their own knowledge without having a vested
interest in perpetuating the status quo. That rules out the scholars and leaves
only the lay people who are ignorant.
The following is a comment from a college mate on this
“You write very well and bring a totally fresh
Can't judge how right or wrong you are as that
requires knowledge beyond what I possess.
Nevertheless l am sure that if we were doing
things the right way we would be certainly more successful.
I am also of the view that the pretentious
interpreters have been wrong and hopelessly ignorant.
They have tried and successfully established a
priestly/ brahmanical class. A thing which is non existent in Islam. “
Islam is a faith
without Priests, Feasts without Sacraments
There is no church hierarchy in Islam, nor do the mosque and
its Imam exercise formal power or influence on the people in its vicinity.
There is no mystical ritual in Islam and there are no interceders between man
and Allah. There are no sacraments to be administered by a priestly class to
the supplicant laity. All men and women are equal before Allah and nearness to Allah
is only based on their righteousness and heedfulness to the commands of Allah.
Forgiveness for sins does not require the waseela or intermediation of a
Redeemer or a priest.
Comparing Islam with Christianity, “this unadorned
relationship cancels the need for baptism, confirmation, confession, extreme
unction and the central Christian act of communion, as well the functions of a
ministering priesthood. For many Christians, Christ bequeathed the foundation
of a future church in the person of St Peter, and He ordained the method of
access to the divine with the ritual of holy communion. Only through the
Church, therefore, as the successor to St Peter, can salvation (and thus
everlasting life) be obtained” Paul Grieve
In Islam, the Qur'än, is Allah's legacy to man, unreservedly
accessible to all equally, to read, contemplate and interpret for himself,
although this process may initially be assisted by the writings or teachings of
experts. It is a duty every Muslim owes to Allah and His Book, to finally reach
a level of understanding of Allah’s word, without the help of experts, and
dispensing with their opinions and interpretations, unless one agrees with
these, in which case, it becomes his own personal understanding. The final
understanding must be one’s own, and not because so and so said this or that.
The contaminated Islam has a priestly class, mystical
rituals, feasts with sacraments and interceders between man and Allah, and
demi-gods whose favours and intercession is sought. There is the laity and the scholarly
class on whom the lay people are dependent. While Islam freed mankind from the sovereignty
of man, the scholars through their theology, have once again chained it, but
these are weak chains only in the minds of the followers because of their
ignorance. Once this ignorance is dispelled, Islam can shine once again.