Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|Weakness of the Muslim community|
|08/04/01 at 05:02:24|
|Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh|
Weakness of the Muslim community
For the last fourteen centuries, we could not decide what is lawful and what is forbidden. Nor could we differentiate between what is beneficial and what is harmful. We are wasting time over small and simple matters. We cannot decide on what type of education will be useful to us, or how to make friends with other nations. We do not realize how fast ahead of us science and technology are moving, or that Islamic education is inadequate for us to compete with the rest of the world. If we will not change our trends and our thinking, we will be completely lost. Please comment.
I am afraid that you are completely wrong on this question. It is not true that for the last fourteen centuries we could not decide what is permissible and what is forbidden. It is not for us to decide on these matters. It is God who decides what is forbidden, because He alone has the authority to make anything forbidden. We have a general rule in Islam which states that everything is permissible unless stated otherwise.
God also says in the Quran: "He (meaning God) has outlined in detail for you what he has forbidden you." There may be some cases which are doubtful or ambiguous. These may differ from one community to another, not because the same thing may be forbidden in one community and lawful in another, but because different lifestyles create different situations and some of these may be doubtful. The best thing to do in such situations is to avoid what is doubtful. This is the advice given to us by the Prophet in an authentic Hadith in which An-Nu'man ibn Basheer reports that he heard God's messenger say: "That which is lawful is plain and that which is unlawful is plain. Between the two of them are doubtful matters of which not many people are aware. Thus, he who avoids doubtful matters clears himself in regard to his faith and his honor, but he who falls into doubtful matters falls into that which is unlawful, like the shepherd who pastures around a sanctuary, all but grazing therein. Truly every king has a sanctuary, and truly God's sanctuary is His prohibitions. Truly in the body there is a morsel of flesh which, if it be wholesome, all the body is wholesome, and which, if it be diseased, all of it is diseased. Truly it is the heart." (Related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim).
Nor do I agree with you when you say that we cannot differentiate between what is beneficial and what is harmful. What worries me is that you state that this has been the case for the last fourteen centuries. This is certainly untrue. How can you explain the rise of the Islamic civilization and its survival for so many centuries? Is it again the lure of wealth and sex? That can hardly be the case.
Had you confined your remarks to, say, this century or the last two centuries, I might have agreed with you. But if you say that this has been the case throughout fourteen centuries, then historical facts are against you. We are certainly at a loss nowadays. [color=Red]That is not because we are Muslims, but because we do not know what Islam is and how to live as Muslims. It is as simple as that.[/color]
Look at your question itself. You say that Islamic education is not enough to compete with other communities. What is Islamic education? If you mean studying only Islam and Islamic law then you are right. But this is not what Islam requires of us. Islam wants every Muslim to know enough about his faith to be able to perform his duties properly. After that, Islam requires the Muslim community to have experts in every field, so that it is self-sufficient in every branch of knowledge. When we have a system which gives us that expertise, then we have a complete Islamic education. Unfortunately, this is not the case, not only at the level of individual Muslim countries, but also at the level of the Muslim world as a whole. Moreover, Muslim countries have not developed a pattern of cooperation that ensures for them the best service by the best Muslim experts in all fields. As a result, they leave the best brains to serve the United States and European countries. It is there that you find a large proportion of the top Muslim experts in all branches of knowledge. Most of them are unwelcome in their own countries. All this is due to a simple fact: Muslims today have not yet come to terms with the basic question whether they want to be true Muslims or not. As a result, they are lost.
[i]Arab News - 05 July 1993[/i]
Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh
Haniff (with 2 f's)
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