While I write about 2nd phase of article inquiring about disturbing trend in the civilization, I will emphasis on the countries governed by Islamic law. Personally, I don't see liberty, equality and a place for minority in the Islamic Law. This article is more based on the study of Pakistan that resembles us most in culture and traditions.
People who are ignorant to history can perish easily. That's why false notion of history creates a generation believing in conspiracy theories than scientic inquiry about religion. That what is happening to the generation of Muslim countries. And this excessive religious education corrodes the youth minds making them unaware of the worldly affairs. The tendency to see every act through the eye of religion tarnishes the viewpoint and starts the pointless debate to determine ‘true Islam’.
Romanticised version of Islam’s early history is constructed purely on memorised accounts. 'Glorious age of religious faith' is the imaginative concept of extremist. It baffles all rationality and history. Land of pure and one provides no space to diversity. This catalyzes the elimination of minority by extremist element in majority.
Meanwhile, Muslim countries continue to lag behind the rest of the world in almost every measure of human rights, scientific achievement, economic vitality, and standard of living. Take oil out of Arab countries and they would be the most corrupt and failed states. We all know about the reports of human rights violation in the countries governed by Sharia laws.
Tendency of feudal violence and gun culture is more seen in Islamic countries. The chance of fair discussion and democracy seems less feasible. Courts are overburdened with cases, land reforms pending, an Army that doesn't care about civilians and democratic leader chosen are either highly corrupt or elite. So majority of uneducated population has been left with no choice over all.
Propaganda of any religious group of the single correct path is a totalitarian act and that leads to the violent suppression of opposition camp. The competition in opposite camps is no longer a consensus-building exercise, but rather a zero-sum game. There is so much insecurity and mistrust that anyone criticizing with reason is consider as Zionist agent or atheist. The pursuit of only one religious view fuelled with elimination of other views lead by small faction of self righteous religious parties catalyzes the downfall of peaceful Islamic countries into chaos. There is a need to end the violent, psychopathic and totalitarian version of the faith.
There is a difference between getting people to think for themselves and telling them what to think. you can’t force people to acquire an opinion, they have to form their own opinion about issues. As in most conflicts, solutions can only come from within. There is lack of rational education in all Islamic countries governed under Sharia. And there is no distinction between teachings of the Quran and the anachronistic 7th century Arabian tribal customs. The solution to the turmoil gripping Muslim society today may be found in reintroducing ijtihad.
Ijtihad is a technical term of Islamic law that describes the process of making a legal decision by independent interpretation of the legal sources, the Qur'an and the Sunnah. It is not practiced in Sunni Islam anymore and notion that the "gates of ijtihad" were "closed" in the 10th century.
The ultimate clash is between the politicised Islam of a radical element which has turned to violence as a means of expressing itself, and the mainstream majority which remains largely silent defending Islam as religion of peace. Muslims as humans and individuals are obviously capable of changing their minds but no the Islamic Mullahs. We need to educate people about human rights, rational thinking and secular society for peaceful co existence.
Let me end the topic with talks of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Dutch intellectual & feminist activist Must Read Interview : Unlike other religions that allowed for criticism, Islam brooks no questioning, Ali said. "In Islam you submit your will to a force outside yourself, to a collective will," she said. Describing the Koran as a book written within a certain cultural context in the 6th century, she said many values are outdated. For instance, she said, in Islam, men and women are not equal, homosexual relations are not tolerated, women found guilty of adultery are required to be stoned to death, and the list of obligations under Islam have led to an environment of bigotry where believers are obliged to distance themselves from non-Muslims...
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