Eid 1435 and Ramadan 1435
(Bringing Islam to the World One Concept at a Time!
Taking the Qur'an to Every Home and Heart that Needs It --
And which One Does Not?)
No Message This Eid or This Ramadan
This Ramadan I had no message to give. No calls to issue. No advice to offer. No Aayaat Karimah to recite and no Ahaadeeth Sharifah to cite.
I am simply numb.
I am numb and speechless thinking of all that Islam really is. And how beautiful, profound, perfect and practical Islam is! And how obvious and self evident it is.
I am numb thinking of what Muslims have become. The choices they make. The silences they keep and the words they utter.
And I am numb looking at all that is going on in the world, both the so-called Muslim as well as the non-Muslim parts of it.
And pondering how Muslims react to these happenings and occurrences – among them as well as in the rest of the world.
Muslim Role in Their Own Destruction
I go beyond that – way, way beyond that – and think about the role Muslims have played, and continue to play, in facilitating and initiating some of these events around the world themselves, both in the past as well as in the present.
How the Muslim masses wallow in their ignorance and backwardness for a period of time that exceeds all count. And how these mostly clueless and hapless hordes are exploited and abused by their leaders, both secular and religious.
Muslims Fooled by Kings and Mullas
Go see how the Muslims allow themselves to be fooled and hoodwinked and bamboozled by their self-anointed leaders from local Mullas to almighty kings and military and civilian masters and dictators and sundry tyrants.
Go find out which of these kings and tyrants ruling the Muslim world are in the pay and pocket of which foreign colonial power and have been for how long.
Educating the “Best Nation”
Go check the state of education in what you call the Muslim world – an expression, “Muslim World,” that even I tried to promote and market at one time – and ask yourself if this was the sure foundation on which to build a “Best Nation” or Khair Ummat, as your petty Mullas never tire of telling you.
Go back as far as you wish in history and check when was it Muslims last had a really viable, competitive and cutting-edge educational system in their midst.
Aurangzeb on Muslim Education
Go and read a letter Aurangzeb, the Mughal Emperor of India, wrote to his teacher and sheikh on the state of education in the realm. And then cry your heart out and ask how much that education has changed among Muslims, in India and elsewhere, since then.
Aurangzeb ruled India for nearly 50 years, from 1658 till his death in 1707. He was an honest man and a true patriot. He never claimed an allowance from the public treasury. But, instead, he met his own personal expenses and those of his family, by making copies of the Qur’an by hand and by knitting caps.
What a way for the mightiest emperor of the time to live his life!
A Hereditary King Who Lived Like a Hermit
Aurangzeb was a hereditary king whom nobody elected. The world had never heard of anything called elections in those days, except for the brief interlude of Risaalat and Khilaafat Rashidah.
And the all too brief rule of Umar bin Abdul Aziz.
British Colonizer Propaganda against Aurangzeb
But the British Colonizers made the name of Aurangzeb mud as Aurangzeb made it impossible for them to establish the foundations of their Colonial Empire in India.
Aurangzeb came to power by placing his own father, Shahjahan, under house arrest, to save the Mughal Empire from the ravages of his profligacy and self-indulgence.
But once in power, Aurangzeb lived a life of impeccable personal integrity and austerity, and unrivaled public accountability, that produced as close a throwback and as close a match, to the days of the Khilaafat Rashidah as one could imagine.
Now you know why the British Colonizers, whose cult was lying and deceit, hated Aurangzeb the way they did and made him a target of their vicious propaganda.
Aurangzeb’s Letter to His Teacher
So, go read that letter that Aurangzeb wrote to his teacher complaining how inadequate and outdated their system of education was and how nothing was being done about it.
That was more than 300 years ago. That letter is still available – in the original Farsi language in which Aurangzeb wrote it.
And then ask yourself what progress Muslim education, politics, social and cultural life has made since then.
What Message This Ramadan 1435?
And then ask yourself what message you would like to give Muslims – and yourself – in this Ramadan 1435.
What Aayats and Hadith you would like to quote. And what wise and smart things you would like to say.
So far as I am concerned, I have nothing to say.
Nothing new to say anyway, other than all that I have written or spoken, all these years, whenever and wherever Allah made it possible for me to do it.
Muslim Ramadan: Fasting, Binging, Sleeping
I did marvel, however, this Ramadan 1435, at how all too many Muslims in all too many parts of the world spend their fast: sleeping, binging and sleeping some more.
And generally taking life easy and soft-pedaling on the more rigorous demands of life.
Reading Qur’an during Ramadan and the Curse of Transliteration
I wondered how much Qur’an is read during this month, this blessed month of Ramadan, which I thought was a “Month of the Qur’an.”
And when I say “Qur’an is read,” I mean Qur’an and not its “transliteration.” For, it is impossible – let me repeat IMPOSSIBLE – to read the Qur’an correctly using the method of transliteration.
In any language.
Understanding and Reflection
And those who do read the Qur’an, I asked myself, how many of them understand what they read.
And how many among them spend how much time and energy reflecting about the deeper meaning of whatever they understood the Qur’an to mean.
And then how much, and how seriously, did they consider the practical implications of what the Qur’an was saying to them?
Qur’an Came to Talk to You
Did they even realize that the Qur’an was directly and personally addressing them, talking to them?
For, that is "what" the Qur’an came into this world to do: To talk to people, directly and personally, both as individuals as well as at the level of national and societies.
And how seriously did they consider the condition of the world in which they live? Their own condition as Muslims – as well as the condition of the world as a whole, including non-Muslims?
Do they – those who do read the Qur’an – even begin to comprehend the mess in which they find themselves – and find their world?
A Question of Responsibility and Accountability
And, then, do they ever ponder the question of responsibility?
And the even more serious and profound question of culpability and accountability?
Do they ever ask who was behind the sorry state of affairs in which they find themselves – and find their world?
“Whodunnit,” do they ask?
How did they – and the world in which they live – get to be the way they are?
Who is responsible?
Agatha Christie may eat her heart out. But it certainly was not the “butler” that did it!
Qur’an Says Muslims Did it!
“It was they themselves,” says the Qur’an. “They are the ones to blame for where they ended up.”
No one but they, says the Qur’an.
Wa laa taloomoonee wa loomoo anfusakum!
“Don’t blame me, blame yourself,” says Allah in the Qur’an.
“And that was on account of all the stuff you did – or failed or refused to do,” says the Qur’an.
Bimaa kasabat ayidinnaas!
Wa maa zalamnaahum wa laakin kaanoo anfusahum yazlimoon!
And how does this sound?
Fa Min Anfusikum!
“It is all coming from you.”
Being Muslim and Forgetting Allah?
And it has been a long and inexorable process – how Muslims slowly but surely turned away from Allah, as a result of which Allah turned away from them.
How they forgot Allah and Allah forgot them.
How they forgot Allah and Allah made them forget themselves. How he made them oblivious of their own lives and surroundings and conditions.
Past and Present:
Essential Ingredients and Predictors of Future
Muslim present is a continuation of Muslim past, and this present and their sad past will surely shape their future, unless they fix and change things starting out with their own condition.
Item by item, Muslims broke the covenant they made with God. And God withdrew their support from them.
If Muslims analyze and understand their past, and if they renounce their mistakes of the present, and they turn to Allah and repent, a brighter future awaits them around the corner.
I Have No Eid. For the Rest of You, Happy Eid!
Those are some of my thoughts this Ramadan, 1435.
And this Eid.
If you want, you can call this my message.
For this Ramadan 1435.
As well as for this Eid 1435.
As for me, I have no Eid to celebrate. Even though I have too, too much to celebrate and rejoice over.
As Allah says:
Wa In Ta’uddoo Ni’amatallahi Laa Tuhsooha!
And Eid, after all, is a gift from Allah.
For the rest of you: Happy Eid!
But do pray tell me how I should go about celebrating this Eid 1435!