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Are Elections Haram? Says Who? And Based on What? Part 7

 

Are Elections Haram?
Says Who? And Based on What?
Part 7

Dr. Pasha

 

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CONTENTS:

(23) Muslims and their Issues and Problems

(24) Muslims’ Good Standing with God

(25) The American Turf: Muslims Cannot Afford to Surrender It

(26) The Real Question

23. Muslims and their Issues and Problems

For years — decades really — I have been telling the Muslims to list on paper some of what they perceive to be their major problems and issues — and then work from there. No one to my knowledge has taken me up on that.

Generally, that is not how Muslims work. At least, that is not how Muslims used to work. Maybe some of the newer kids coming up on the block will bring in some of those much-needed skills.

Muslims are mostly interested in solutions — ready and instant solutions — and not in problems. Nor are they interested in a serious analysis of those problems. As for the causes and contributing factors to those problems, Muslims are mostly clueless.

Clearly, someone forgot to tell the Muslims that in life problem identification and analysis must precede any meaningful attempt at finding solutions.

As a result, we may see many Muslims rushing to propose solutions to problems they barely understand. At the same time, many Muslims would also demand that any proposed solution be a “practical” one — meaning, I suppose, it must yield immediate and concrete results.

Often, there is no analysis; there is no research; there is no theory; there is no logic or systematic reasoning; and there is no focus on clarity or understanding. Generally, ad hoc speculation, personal opinion and directionless talk take the place of all of the above.

I have spent considerable time giving speeches on how Muslims were seriously lacking in the department of theory — and research — and proposing some new theoretical models of how Muslims needed to look at their role in the world, especially in the West.

Some good Muslims made the entire set of the videotapes of those several hours worth of speeches disappear. Had those tapes been available, they would have provided an effective alibi for the Muslims of the West in the face of some of the suspicion and persecution that was let loose upon them by the government following 911.

Forces that Would Want to Keep Muslims Ignorant and Backward

It is as if there are forces in the universe that would want to keep Muslims from learning to think through their problems rationally and analytically.

Anyone can see why.

If Muslims learn to identify their problems successfully, and are able to analyze and understand them scientifically, then they will be on their way to solving them. And that simply may not sit well with those who may have a vested interest in keeping Muslims ignorant, backward, demoralized, floundering, lost, bonded and beholden.

For a lot of people in this world Muslims are what some would call a “cash cow.” They are the proverbial goose that lays the golden egg. That means there is money to be made in and through Muslims — big money.

Therefore, buying and selling Muslims — and robbing them in the process — can be lucrative business.

So, why would those who may be used to trading in Muslims for huge personal, political and economic gains, want their prize commodity — Muslims — to learn to solve their problems? That would kill the cash cow — or the goose with the propensity to lay golden eggs.

Let me try to provide a list of what I consider to be some of the problems that plague Muslims. The list, however, is a quick, random and partial one.

Iqbal on Muslim Problems

Reading Iqbal could be both invigorating and saddening. The fire of divine love in his poetry acts on you like tonic. But at the same time, his penchant to say things exactly as he sees them could also leave you dejected and dispirited.

For those of you who may ask who or what is Iqbal, I would suggest you read my piece on Iqbal in www.IslamicSolutions.com.

And Iqbal does not mince words when it comes to critiquing Muslim conduct and conditions. The whole of Jawab-e-Shikwah is in effect an unvarnished indictment of Muslims by a voice from God Almighty himself.

It is Iqbal’s Muslim version of J’accuse!

But what did the Muslims do in response to Iqbal’s criticism? Did they go, one by one, over the problems identified by Iqbal and seek ways of addressing them? No, not to my knowledge!

Muslims marched on to other and newer excitements in life as history moved on and as Iqbal became a fading memory in the Muslim mind. The Muslim problems Iqbal had identified, using the voice from heaven as his mouthpiece, remained as they were.

In some cases at least they got worse.

Being Human Can Be Hazardous to Your Health

Many of these problems arise from the fact that Muslims are, after all, human beings — like everyone else. As children of Adam, Alaihis Salam, Muslims have a great deal in common with the rest of their kinfolk — and they have inherited from their father Adam a common tendency to err, and sometimes err in all kinds of disastrous ways.

And from that point of view, Muslim or non-Muslim, being human can be fairly hazardous to your health.

But in some cases, being the kind of Muslims we are seems to compound our human predicament and hand us a slate of problems that are uniquely and powerfully our own — as Muslims.

That means we share with others some of the common problems endemic to the human race as humans — qua humans. But at the same time, as Muslims, we have some problems of our own that are different from — and that are over and above — the problems of others.

So here it goes. My tentative and quick list of some of the problems Muslims face.

Cataloguing Muslim Ills:

Muslim ills — call them problems, issues, headaches, challenges, whatever — stated here in no particular order, and without distinction of the individual and the collective — include, but are not limited to, the following — and don’t mind the overlap either:

More on How Muslims Make a Mess of their Lives

Some of the other ills, issues and problems that have dogged the Muslims include the following:

Even More Muslim Deficiencies

Here are some more things that can be added to the list of Muslim ills, issues and problems that make Muslims what they are today — and that to me are the real enemy of Islam and Muslims:

The list is a mile long. And not too many of these things have the Muslims bothered to put on the table and discuss seriously, honestly and openly.

Knowing and Understanding Issues Is Key to Solving Them

That means the Muslims are nowhere near solving their major issues. That is because knowing and understanding issues is the key to solving them.

And Muslims have not made much real progress in identifying what those issues are and in analyzing and understanding them.

Nor have they spent any serious time, energy or resources in coming to grips with the short-term and long-term causes and effects of those issues.

Thus, in the ultimate analysis, Muslims are, to a significant degree, the victims of their own Nafs and Hawaa — of their own personal, intellectual, moral, social, economic and political shortcomings and excesses; of their own countless omissions and commissions.

Thus, Muslims are, in some serious ways, their own victims. If someone asks what is wrong with Muslims, we can almost say Muslims. That is what happened to Muslims.

Muslims happened to Muslims.

As a result, the Muslims are mostly hoist on their own petard.

They themselves are — and always have been — their own worst enemy.

And of course they are, as human beings, open and vulnerable to the daily depredations of that other standard enemy of the human race: Shaitaan.

All the Shaitaans of Jinn and Ins — bad ones of the human and Jinn variety.

That means sometimes Shaitaan in the form of Jinn — that other fiery creation of God, besides humans and angels — gets them.

And sometimes various human agencies, also acting on the behest and in the role of Shaitaan, get them.

24. Muslims’ Good Standing with God

Yet, the fact remains Muslims are in general good standing with God Almighty. It is a huge topic and needs a great deal of time and space to explain.

But suffice it to say at this point that the Muslims are in good standing with God Almighty so long as they say — utter with understanding and belief — that amazing threshold formula for success and salvation both in this world and the next one: Laa Ilaaha Illallaah!

That no one else is willing to say that clearly and openly and unequivocally.

That utterance is Muslims’ — and everyone else’s — ticket to God Almighty — and to Paradise in the next world — regardless of how they may manage to ruin and botch their earthly existence.

Thus, Muslims are in general compliance with Allah’s commands and in general good standing with Allah so long as they — just to name a few things out of many likely candidates:

More Reasons for Muslims to be in Good Standing with God

That is not all.

There are more reasons why the good standing of Muslims with God Almighty would continue. For example, God would look favorably upon Muslims if they:

More on How Muslims Are Good People — Really

The story continues — the story of how the Muslims, even in some of their darkest hours, can be and indeed are really good people.

This list also is a mile long! And what a list it is!

Muslims are or will be in general compliance with Allah’s law and the model of his Prophet, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam — that is, they are in good standing with their creator — so long as they:

And support and uphold the principles of justice and fairness in their dealings with others.

25. The American Turf:
Muslims Cannot Afford to Surrender It

All this means one thing: Muslims cannot and should not allow America or anything or anyone else to become the permanent and standing enemy of Islam and Muslims.

That means Muslims of America should not supinely surrender the American turf — their American homeland — to the Right-Wing extremists, fanatics and fundamentalists in America — either of the religious or of the garden-variety racist type or of the political or academic type or a combination of all of the above.

Or to anyone else of any stripe or description.

Cacophonists of Hate and Half-Truths in the Media

That means Muslims should not automatically roll over and play dead to sundry fanatical, fascist-type hate-mongers and promoters of personal, domestic or foreign interests and causes at the expense of genuine and broader American interests and wellbeing — and truth.

Nor should they, specifically, allow themselves to be cowed down, demoralized or browbeaten by media bullies — the merchandisers, among them, of prejudice and half-truths, and the strident cacophonists, in their midst, of hate, anger, venom, falsehood and malice in radio, television and newspapers — or over the Internet.

Muslims Are Stakeholders in America’s Future —
And its Present, not to Say its Past!

The fact is America has incalculable potential for good and much of it remains untapped and unclaimed. And Muslims are important stakeholders in America’s future.

And its present. Not to say, its past as well.

America is a free, wealthy, powerful, polyglot nation of diverse social and political strands and savagely competing interests and influences. America generally goes where its powerbrokers, after endless wrangling and maneuvering, manage to take it.

But at no point is the trajectory of American politics and policy carved in stone. It is a continually evolving, shifting process, as, of all people, Muslims should know.

If America today appears to be on a Muslim turkey-shoot, and appears to be targeting Islam also in the process, the day is not far off when America will find its way to being a good friend of Islam and Muslims.

While it remains primarily America’s own responsibility to do so — if for nothing else, for the sake of its own millions of citizens — it is also the job of the American Muslims to see that it happens — and in the quickest possible time.

Competing for America’s Soul

Therefore, what the Muslims need to do is to become participants and competitors in this process of seeking a role in shaping and impacting America’s soul and psyche, rather than sulking from outside and allowing America’s military, social, technical and financial resources and might to be stacked up against them as their natural-born enemy.

Muslims must realize that God may not forsake America just because America killed a large number of Muslims or threw a few thousand of them in jail without due process. God will turn against America decisively only when America openly and completely abandons all pretensions of justice, truth, integrity, fairness, honesty, transparency, compassion, Godliness, “religiosity” and common decency.

While America has made some rapid strides in that direction in the wake of September 11, and earlier, she is still a long way from reaching the end of that road. It is the job of the American Muslims to come America’s rescue.

American Muslims must compete not only for the worldly wealth that America has to offer, but also for America’s soul and destiny before God. They need to work to save America from its own follies and excesses, not only from a worldly point of view, but also from the point of view of accountability before God Almighty and in the hereafter.

In this sense, what is true of America could also be said be largely true of the West in general.

26. The Real Question

So, the real question before both players in this epochal human drama — Muslims on the one hand and America (and the West) on the other hand — now is how they can work out a method of coexistence and cooperation with one another — a modus vivendi — that will ensure the maximum wellbeing of both sides in the decades to come.

And beyond that, how they can innovatively and imaginatively link their lives, fortunes, interests and destinies together to build a new future of peace, security, justice, compassion, felicity, prosperity and blessing for all of planet earth and its many occupants for at least the remainder of this century.

From Before Nine-Eleven

If some parts of this writing read strange or different that is because they were written before 9-11 was even a possibility in anyone’s mind.

They are left standing here to provide some kind of perspective on aspects of Muslim thinking in America way before 9-11 happened.

Wallahu A’alam!

Allah knows best.

Allahummarham Ummata Muhammadin, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam!

Ya, Allah! Have mercy on the Ummat of Muhammad, Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam!

This brings us to the end of Part VII of Are Elections Haram? Says Who? And Based on What?

Next: Inshallah, we will bring you Part VIII as soon as Allah enables us to finish working on it.

Du’a: Please do not forget me, my parents, my teachers and my ancestors in your Du’a.

Drafts: And do please bear in mind that our manuscripts are mostly drafts in need of further research and revision, which we are often unable to undertake or complete due to time and resource constraints.

Visiting: You are visiting www.IslamicSolutions.com.

E-mail: Write to us at DrSyedPasha [at] AOL [dot] com

Allah: Allah be with you — where and how you want.

End of Part 7 of 8

Written, January 2001
Modified, 2004, 2005, 2006

(To be Revised)

© 2006 Syed Husain Pasha

Dr. Pasha is an educator and scholar of exceptional 
talent, training and experience. He can be reached at DrSyedPasha [at] 
AOL [dot] com or www.IslamicSolutions.com.