Muslims! You ain’t seen nothin’ yet

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Muslims! is your brain boiling over the blasphemous cartoons? Do you feel helpless before the U.S. forces flushing the Qur’an down in toilets, blowing up mosques in false flag operations and showering civilians with White Phosphorus? Do you feel humiliated and discriminated when you are singled out at airports and elsewhere? Do you feel belittled when you are labeled "Islamists" for following ABC of the Qur’an and the Sunnah and heretics such as Manji and Rushdie are promoted as "moderate" Muslims?

If your answer to these question is yes, you need to cool down and brace for the worse. You ain’t see nothin’ yet. The real catastrophe is in the making.

Besides the military forces preparing to wreak havoc on the rest of the Muslim world, some radical anti-Islamists are sharpening their non-military weapons of mass destruction. For example, Sandi Dubowski, who won the Teddy gay and lesbian award in 2001 for his controversial documentary "Trembling Before G-d," is planning for a film that, which according to some reports "may cause an even bigger stir" in the reactive Muslim world. The Film is titled "In the Name of Allah." The objective is to promote homosexual Muslims in the name of promoting understanding of Islam.

These attempts at undermining the core beliefs and values of Islam are promoted as efforts to understand Islam. According to Sandi Dubowski, "The world right now needs to understand Islam, and these [Muslim homosexuals] are the most unlikely storytellers of Islam." Dubowski plans to "find ways of screening it in every Muslim nation, even if it’s underground." This is part of the mission to teach Muslims civility.[1]

Muslims have to go through the physical and intellectual horrors to learn civility and become normal, civilized human beings. The first step in this civilizing mission is to prove to non-Muslims that Muslims are not equal human beings. They are barbarians and evil. We are just entering into the mainstreaming phase of this kind of fascism in which the New York Times joins the ranks of rabid Islamophobes in saying: "The cartoons are just an isolated incident." [2] The rest of the analysts are presenting protests in the Muslim world as some kind of grand conspiracy to conquer the West. They are challenging the rationale behind the protests with the argument that why don’t Muslim protest when people are beheaded in Iraq. These Islamophobes ignore that Muslims did not protest and their governments did not lodge complaints when it was absolutely confirmed that Iraq was occupied through lies and deceit.

Muslims didn’t protest when Fallujah was raised to the ground and thousands of innocent civilians were butchered. Muslims did not protest when they come to know that Iraqis were treated in the most inhuman and barbaric way possible. In this mayhem, beheadings and bombings become part of the genocidal actions and reactions for which the primary responsibility rests on the shoulders of the United States.

Linking beheadings to cartoons is a futile attempt to justify blasphemous cartoons and other similar measures to insult Muslims and present their religion as evil. Beheadings are as much part of the reaction of a desperate, occupied people as are the protests to condemn blasphemous cartoons. Linking reaction of the occupied people in Iraq to protests over the cartoons is an attempt to criminalize the protests. The need is to remove the root causes and the reactions would be gone. There would neither be protests or beheadings. How many beheadings did we witness in Iraq before the arrival of "civilized" American and British forces? Of course, none. The answer to "why none" is the key to silencing those who are putting forward conspiracy theories about Islam overtaking Western societies.

The rising chorus of Islamophobes openly calling Muslims to leave the Western countries is a sign of the problem ahead. In January 2004, I wrote that Muslims are becoming 21st Century Jews.[3] To address concerns of some overly optimistic critics, I started collecting evidence on the same page of the web site. Gradually, I am running out of space because news of the way Muslims are discriminated and harassed are increasing with each passing day. Even greater is the realization that the 20th century Jews were very fortunate. They were facing the wrath of Hitler in Germany alone. Muslims in the 21st century are facing multiple problems on the global scale.

If we look at the list of requirements which Muslims have to fulfill before they are considered worth living among normal human beings, one may find out that it is an open challenge to them to leave your religion and associated beliefs or get ready for total isolation. In Germany, the state of Baden-Wurttemberg has added its own list of guidelines for use by officials when interviewing Muslims seeking German citizenship. All applicants face the usual tests of language proficiency, general knowledge and their ability to fend for themselves and their families. They also must accept the democratic principles laid out in Germany’s constitution. But Muslims face up to an additional 30 questions probing their religious beliefs, as well as their views on such topics as Western values, women’s clothing, homosexuality, wife-beating and polygamy. Among other things, they could be asked whether they accept criticism of their religion, how they feel about the terrorist attacks of 9/11, what their attitudes are toward Jews and whether they would allow their daughters to participate in school activities. The state’s Interior Minister says the test is designed to weed out unsuitable applicants or to be used as a basis for later deportation of those found to have lied.[3]

This type of screening based on individual beliefs and values, rather than actions, is the beginning of 21st century fascism, which will clearly lead to the coming exodus, the end of nation states and Muslim holocaust in the near future.[4]

Assimilation! What assimilation?

Muslim are asked to assimilate and adopt Western values. What assimilation entails and what are Western values is unknown. Are Muslim told to embrace the values that led to Nazism, Marxism, fascism, nationalism, racism, voyeurism, zero-tolerance, poking fun and twisting into obscenity some of the most sacred religious symbols, exploitation and genocide? These are all part of the Western baggage. Values should be judged not merely by the heights of achievements to which a society or a people have ascended, but by the depths of chicanery, deceit and brutality to which they have descended. When did Iraqi behead and bombed each other in the last 50 years or so the way they are doing now? What actually forced them to follow this highway to hell? Of course, it is not Islam. The people responsible for this state of affairs are those who have descended into the depths of incivility.

In the twentieth century, Islam has not often proved fertile ground for democracy and looking at what has become of democracy in the United States and elsewhere, it seems the Muslim world didn’t lose too much. On the other hand, the Muslim world has not been hospitable to Nazism, fascism, or communism, unlike Christian World (as in Germany, Italy, Russia, Czechoslovakia), Buddhist world (Japan before and during World War II, Pol Pot’s Cambodia, Vietnam, North Korea), or Confucian world (Mao’s China). The Muslim world has never yet given rise to systematic fascism and its organized brutalities. Hafiz al-Assad’s Syria and Saddam Hussein’s Iraq have been guilty of large-scale violence, but fascism also requires an ideology of repression that has been absent in the two countries. And apart from the dubious case of Albania, communism has never independently taken hold in the Muslim world.

Muslims are being forced to adopt Western values without explaining the nature of values. This insults Muslims and belittles their religion because enumeration of good values would clearly show that the stated values are as Islamic as they might be Western. In the broader perspective it is the strength of Muslim values and culture that we do not find any Muslim equivalents of Nazi extermination camps, nor Muslim conquests by genocide on the scale perpetrated by Europeans in the Americas and Australia, nor Muslim equivalents of Stalinist terror, Pol Pot’s killing fields, or the starvation and uprooting of tens of millions in the name of Five Year Plans. Nor are there Muslim versions of apartheid like that once approved by the South African Dutch Reformed Church, or of the ferocious racism of Japan before 1945, or of the racist culture of the Old South in the United States with its lynchings and brutalization of black people. In the present day world, there is no piece of land that has been forcibly occupied by Muslims and where occupied people are treated like Israel in occupied Arab lands and the U.S. in Iraq and Afghanistan. Even the most demonized Muslims, the Taliban, hadn’t run concentration camps like the United States, which is running the kind of jails in Afghanistan which even the Pentagon officials agree to be worse than Guantanamo.[5]

Exhorting Muslims day and night to assimilate and embrace Western values ignores the fact that Islam has brought to the calculus of universal justice some protection from the abyss of human depravity. The advocates of Western values cannot come up with a single noble value that is not part and parcel of Islam. For example, The Qur’an confronts the issue of national and ethnic differences head on. There is no place for racism in Islam.  Unlike Christian churches, the mosque has never been segregated by race. Tolerance and multiculturalism are the core values of Islam. One of Muhammad’s most beloved companions was an Ethiopian, Bilal Rabah, a freed slave who rose to great prominence in early Islam. Due to the non-racial nature, Islamic history has been free of systematic efforts to forcibly assimilate people or obliterate them. Islam conquered by honesty and justice rather than by genocide and torture in the name of freedom and democracy.

We must admit that there is no Islamic state and no real Islamic society established anywhere in the world. Despite that the strength of Islamic values can be judged from comparison of patterns of human interaction and social problems in Muslim and Western societies. The relatively more political violence in the Muslim world is the direct consequence of never-ending colonial adventures. On the other hand, Western societies generate more street violence than the Muslim world. Compare the two largest cities in Africa: Cairo and Johannesburg. One Muslim–”not Islamic–”the other Westernized.  Cairo is much more populous than Johannesburg, but street violence is only a fraction of what it is in the South African city. Similarly compare levels of social violence in Tehran with New York and find out where citizens are more at risk from the depredations of their fellow citizens. It is not that there is a dictatorial regime in Tehran in place. Otherwise Lagos would be as peaceful as Tehran.

An objective analysis leads us to the conclusion that of all the value systems in the world, Islam has been the most resistant to the leading destructive social and political forces from Nazism to, drugs, prostitution and AIDS. Democracy might soon become part of the list because of the way it is being exploited to materialize nefarious designs.  Those who are trying to impose Western values on Muslims must realize that Muslims are not animals who would be domesticated according to the whims and wishes of their masters. Muslims are in possession of the guidance that can lead the humanity towards ultimate success. They are in a position to find postmodern solutions to their political tensions and economic woes. They can pursue the positive aspects of globalization without falling victim to the negative aspects of westernization. They only need to be left alone. They only need to be spared by the continued colonial adventures and daily dictations.

Wake-up or Perish

Not knowing the limits of assimilation, some Muslims have gone, for example, from calling oneself Suzanne instead of Susan to the extent of giving Christian names to their children and eating pork. Is every Muslim ready to go to this extent for assimilation and acceptance? Muslims might not be ready, but they are expected. Without defining the limits, they are threatened to assimilate or else.

This is the time for Muslims to wake-up or perish. It is now or never. The task is hard but simple. The misconceptions about Muslims and Islam are deeper but extremely easy to shatter. Let us see how.

The overarching, umbrella misconception is the result of presenting Islam as Islamism and non-Islam as "moderate" and "liberal" Islam. Muslims are presented as "Islamists" and heretics, who go the extent of challenging the Qur’an and cursing the Prophet of Islam, as "moderate" and "practicing" Muslims. To avoid facing the horror which Muslims cannot even imagine, they need to shatter these basic misconceptions.

Although propagated far and wide with the help of the "mainstream" media and other projects, such as "project Ijthihad" by Irashad Manji and Wikipedia, tackling these misconceptions with the ABC of Islam is not a hard task.

Muslims need to re-focus the attention on the basic beliefs which are a pre-requisite for coming to the fold of Islam. Highlighting the meaning of Islam and the basic requirements for coming to the fold of Islam are good enough to separate truth from falsehood. A renewed focus on these basic beliefs will help Muslims show that what is being promoted as Islamism is actually Islam and "moderate" or "civil democratic" Islam is in total contradiction to the basic requirements for being a Muslim.  

Islamism is a recent invention of Islamophobes. Many in the West have accepted Islamism as a term "used by political scientists and by liberal Muslims who try to separate their beliefs from politics.” Presently, this is the case of a few individuals using these terms. Even if the whole world agrees with them, still it would not alter the teachings of the Qur’an, which is the final touchstone.

Islamophobes define Islamism as “a set of political ideologies derived from various religious views of Muslim fundamentalists, which hold that Islam is not only a religion, but also a political system that should govern the legal, economic and social imperatives of the state.” Muslims need to ask the believers of this definition: If this is Islamism, what is Islam? For that one needs to refer to the Qur’an where Islam is described as a Deen. This will lead to another basic question to find out what is Deen and what does the Qur’an mean when it exhorts Muslims to establish the Deen of Islam? Answers to these question will lead the indoctrinated minds to finding exactly what the Islamophobes are describing as Islamism

Although the simplest definition of Deen–”a way of life–”in itself is good enough to defeat whatever has been demonized as Islamism at length, still there is a need to understand the concept of Deen from the basic source of Islam, the Qur’an, to disprove definitions and explanations about Islamism and Islamists.

If Islam is a way of life and it is a basic requirement for Muslims to adopt Islam as a way of life, how can we say that those who want to follow Islamic principles in legal, social, political, economic, and political matters are Islamists, not Muslims. If those who want to live by Islam are Islamists, who are Muslims? How can a way of life be considered complete without its social, political, economic and legal aspects? If these aspects are integral components of a way of life, how can Islam be a way of life, yet those who proclaim to be living by Islam would live by secular principles and values in these integral components of life.

Understand your way of life

To avoid perishing, Muslims need to understand their responsibilities as Muslims and explain to others the basic requirements for being Muslims. The literal meanings of Deen are to: obey, become obedient, become abased and submissive and serve. All this, however, is impossible without the presence of some authority to be obeyed. There are other meanings of Deen as well, such as “a particular law”, “a statute”“an ordinance”, “requital”, “recompense”, “judgment”, “reckoning”, etc. So, the primary significance of the term Deen can be reduced to four: a). indebtedness b). submissiveness c). judicious power d). natural inclination or tendency. But when the preposition “la”, i.e. Arabic letter “laam” is used with Deen, it means particularly, “obedience.”

For example, lahu al-Deen (Qur’an: 10:22, 16:52, 29:6531:32, 39:2, 39:11, 40:14, 40:65, and 98:5) specifically means that obedience–” Al-Deen–”is only to Allah, not to any worldly authority or law. Obedience to worldly authority is allowed only when that authority is responsible for ensuring obedience to Allah (Qur’an: 4:59, 4:83).

The Qur’an clearly says: "And We have revealed to you the Book with the truth…We appoint a law and a way" (05:48). The secular assertions in this regard ignore the message of the Qur’an which is so explicitly mentioned in 03:03; 33:36; 5:33, 38; 24:2; 24:4, 2:178; and 17:33. There is no question of literal or other kind of interpretation of these verses. What we actually see is that promoters and users of the terms Islamists and Islamism never resort to explaining these clear verses. It is important to note in the light of Verse 12:76 that the Qur’an does not differentiate between Deen-il-malik (law of the king) and the law of Allah. Muslims are not supposed to live by Deen-il-malik that negates the principles and way of life prescribed by the Qur’an. Instead, whosoever seek as Deen other than the Deen of Allah ( Wamaen yabtaghi ghayra al-islami Deenan), "it will not be accepted from him, and he will be a loser in the Hereafter" (Qur’an: 3:85). This will remain Islam, no matter how we may like to label it as “radical,”“orthodox” or “extremist.” These are the clear commands with no other kind of interpretation possible than what we clearly see.

The circuitous liberal or secular arguments cannot absolve Muslim from the clearly stated responsibility of establishing the Deen (3:85, 5:3, 2:208, 42:13) and the struggle to make it prevail (48:28, 9:33 and 61:9).

To see how Muslims cannot escape living one or another Deen in any part of the world, and that the word Deen is linked to living a way of life and the overall set up of a society, we need to understand the verb dana which derives from Deen and conveys the meaning of being indebted. In the state in which one finds oneself in debt to a Dain (creditor), it follows that one subjects oneself to obeying to laws and ordinances governing debts, and also, in a way, to the creditor, designated as a Dain.

One in debt is always under obligation, or dayn. Being under obligation naturally involves judgment ( daynunah) and conviction ( idana) as the case may be. All these significations, including their contraries inherent in dana, are practicable only in organized societies involved in commercial life in towns and cities, denoted by mudun or madain. A town or city ( madinah) has a judge, ruler, or governor ( dayyan), certain power structure and systems. Submission to this set up and feeling indebted and bound to obey the relevant laws, etc. makes one live according to the specific Deen of that city or state.

According to the Qur’an, man cannot escape being in the state of living a Deen. Hence the term Deen is also used to denote to ways of life other than Islam. However, what makes Islam different is that the submission according to Islam is sincere and total submission to Allah’s will and this is enacted willingly as absolute obedience to the law revealed by Him. “Do they seek other than the Deen of Allah? while all creatures in the heaven and on the earth have, willing or unwilling, submitted to His Will, and to Him shall they all be returned." (Qur’an: 3:83).

Muslims are not only obliged to live by Islam in all walks of life, but it is also obligatory upon them to establish living by it in a society. The words aqeemoo alddeena (Qur’an: 42:13) clearly indicate Iqaamat-e-Deen, i.e. the setting up or establishment of a way of life which is impossible without the formal power structure and legal, political, economic and military systems. Islamophobes have given it the title of Islamism.

If we ask the defenders of Western values as to what they actually mean by defending their "way of life" or "life style." Their instant answer will actually be the Western politico-socio-economic system. That is what the Qur’an means when it commands its believers to establish Islam as a way of life. The Islamophobes then turn around and say, those who want to live by Islam in all walks of life are Islamists and their philosophy is Islamism.

When asked what is Islamism, Islamophobes define it as “a set of political ideologies derived from various religious views of Muslim fundamentalists, which hold that Islam is not only a religion, but also a political system that should govern the legal, economic and social imperatives of the state.” When looked from the Qur’anic perspective this is actually Islam, not Islamism. Islam can never be limited to just personal ethics or spirituality.

In the Qur’anic sense, Islam is Al-Deen, a way of life, not of the self-proclaimed “moderate” Muslims or their Islamophobic sponsors, but the Deen of Allah. (Qur’an: 10:22, 16:52, 29:6531:32, 39:2, 39:11, 40:14, 40:65, 98:5). The command is for establishing the Deen, which means “establishing obedience of Allah” and living according to the prescribed way of life.

Establishing the Deen–”a way of life–”is actually establishing a society, an order that guarantees living a life under a complete politico-socio-economic order. Verse 3:19 says that Al-Deen as approved by Allah is Islam. The crux is that the Al-Hukm [the command] is for none other than Allah. "Verily Al-Hukm belong to none but Allah and He has commanded that you should serve none except Him; this is Al-Deen-e-Qayyam [the right Deen]" (12:40). The word Hakoomat (government, governance) is derived from the word Al-Hukm in the Qur’an, used in the context of Deen.

To go further, one has to consider Qur’anic verses 1:4 and 82:18-19, where Al-Deen is used with the word ” Maalik” and ” Tamlik.” The root of these words is dominion, sovereignty, authority, kingship, rule and ownership. The Qur’an stresses that sovereignty belongs to Allah alone (Qur’an: 40:12, 82:19-19). Yaum-ul-Deen is the time, day, era, age, and zamaana when none have the sovereignty, authority or dominion except Allah.

A holistic approach to the words Deen, Islam, Iqaamat-e-Deen, Al-Hukm, Mulk and their meanings lead us to the conclusion that Islam is not a religion. It is a Deen–”a way of life–”as repeatedly mentioned in the Qur’an. Deen is not just about some rituals but it is about obedience of Allah, submission to the Laws of Allah, and establishment of the sovereignty, kingship and the rule of Allah. These references cannot be overruled by mere statements of the Islamophobes and some opportunist among Muslims who are labeling whatever is so clearly described in the Qur’an as Islamism. What they call Islamism is actually Islam. What they call “moderate” Islam has no reference in the Qur’an and the Sunnah because a Muslim has to be moderate and act moderate. If a Muslim goes to extremes, he is already violating the basic requirement for being a Muslim. This is similar to calling a Muslim who exercise patience as patient Muslims, because they have to be patient anyway.

The bottom line is all these Islamophobic phrases and terms have been introduced in the last few years to divide Muslims, restrict them from living by Islam as a way of life–”one of the basic requirements for being a Muslim–”and demonizing Islam as a whole for materializing the totalitarian designs of the few in power.

Muslims and non-Muslims falling into this trap is disastrous for the future of humanity because all these concepts are geared towards demonizing a people and finally making them evil; fit for global holocaust. We have a lot to see in the ongoing events to see the future, which is extremely bleak for Muslims, particularly if they continued to remain defensive and reactive. Muslims need to wake up and play a proactive role in understanding and promoting what is required of them as Muslims. They need to look at the long term consequences of the words and deeds which they might be considering benign or irrelevant today. 

Notes:

[1]. Muslims are now forced to learn homosexuality because it is part of "civility." Premier of Ontario, for example, encouraged Muslim parents in November 2004 to allow their children to attend public school classes on tolerance for homosexuality because this was part of learning civility. Ottawa Citizen wrote in one of its editorials (November 19, 2004): "The right of parents to teach their children morals doesn’t trump the efforts of schools to teach their students civility." It is not only imposing un-Islamic values on Muslims but also spreading the misconception that Islam as a religion is not civilized and so are not Muslims.

[2] http://icssa.org/21s_century_Jews.htm

[3] Editorial, Globe and Mail, March 6, 2006.

[4] http://usa.mediamonitors.net/layout/set/print/content/view/full/15247

[5] Alec Russell of the daily Telegraph (February 27, 2006) reported Pentagon officials admitting that U.S. run jail in Afghanistan is "worse than Guantanamo."

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