The betrayal of the role and the failed Muslims
Dr. Firoz Mahboob Kamal
The betrayal and the downfall
Muslims claim to be the followers of Islam. They also claim to be the adherents to Prophet Muhammad (peace be umon him)’s teachings and legacy. But the path they have taken in politics, state building, education, judiciary, social policies, warfare and culture is not the same that the Prophet (peace be upon him) of Islam and his companions followed. There exist more dissimilarities than similarities between the two. In the path of the Prophet (peace be up on him)’s there were mass-scale Qur’anic literacy, Islamic state building, sharia based judiciary, jihad for the eradication of evil forces, and cosmopolitan Muslim unity. But these are not seen in the lives of today’ Muslims. They have abandoned Islam’s key political, ideological, and civilisational objective long ago. They have also ignored their own assigned role. They have invented their own convenient brand of Islam that restricts religious practices only within the rituals like five time prayers, month long fasting, hajj and zakat. Muslims’ most obligatory responsibility to work as the viceroy of Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala is kept out of the focus or totally forgotten. Thus Muslims make a wide deviation from the Qur’anic roadmap –the siratul mustaqeem. This way they betray their own belief.
The downfall of Muslims owes to the defeat not only in military wars, but also in war of ideas. The European colonialists colonised not only Muslims’ lands but also their minds. They invaded the conceptual premise and damaged it badly. They restricted the Qur’anic literacy cum guidance. Because of detachment from the Qur’anic guidance, they failed to identify Truth from falsehood. It also damages the understanding of their own role. As a result, jihad for eradicating the wrong and establishing the right –as was seen in Prophet (peace be upon him)’s life, has no place in their life. It also affected the traditional ulama. Most of these ulama consider such political struggle a tool of distraction from spiritual development and ibada. So they keep themselves away from engaging in politics. As if, politics is an exclusive domain of the secularists.
Setting direction for the state, framing its policies and laws, building its institutions, and guiding the people are the functions of politics. Hence, a person who is assigned to work as the viceroy of Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala, how can he or she keep himself and herself out of politics? And being out of politics, how can he or she play his or her civilizational role? Then, Islam’s holistic objectives stay only in the pages of the Holy Qur’an. It also goes against the most important legacy of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). The Prophet (peace be upon him) engaged in politics, built a state, fought wars, engaged with foreign states, implemented social policies to execute his state-building as well as a civilisation-building role. How can one be a true Muslim without following such prophetic tradition? How can one play a civilizational role if his or her practices stay restricted only inside mosques, religious seminaries and prayer rooms?
Politics decides the fate of a people. It is not a secular profession for a Muslim; it is jihad –the highest ibada in Islam. The Islamic objective can attain its goal only through it. This is why the Prophet (peace be upon him) had to sit on the driving seat for 10 years. But, because of deep conceptual corruption, most religious scholars and common Muslims stay out of politics. As a result of political void, the alien or home-grown enemies of Islam could easily occupy the driving seats of almost every Muslim country. Even when the Muslim lands were occupied one by one by the kuffar colonialists, the so-called ulama remained secluded inside mosques and religious seminaries. They didn’t engage in obligatory jihad against the kuffar occupiers. As a result, the enemies of Islam could easily take control of the whole Muslim World without fighting a single significant war. They enjoyed a trouble-free period of about two hundred years to run their corruptive educational, cultural and ideological engineering to take people far away from Islam. Those kuffar colonialists have left; but most Muslim countries still remain occupied by the colonial educational products. This is indeed the most calamitous event in Muslim history.
For a non-Muslim, politics is a tool for grabbing power and pursuing the objectives of a person, party, tribe, class or nation. But for a Muslim, it is the holy jihad for fulfilling Islam’s sublime civilizational goal. Hence, every Muslim man and woman must have a political role. For building a civilization, it needs laws and law-enforcement agencies. It also needs to frame policies on social welfare, education, culture, economics, defence, security, and many others. Since these are exclusively the functions of a state, how can one influence the state policies without engaging in politics? This is why the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his devout companions had to engage in politics till the last days of life. They fought wars, raised a state, and continuously expanded and strengthened it. The denial of politics is indeed the betrayal of the assigned role. It is also the betrayal of the Prophet (peace be upon him)’s legacy. It is also a treachery against Islam’s humanising cum civilizational objective. How such a betrayal can be reconciled with the vision of Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala which commands that His deen should prevail over all forms of falsehood and fake religions?
Antipathy to politics and the crimes
Antipathy to politics is playing the most damaging role to speed up the ongoing downfall of Muslims. Such aversion to politics is indeed helping the enemies by causing distraction from Islam’s holy mission. And so-called ulama are part of the enemy project. Such a conceptual perversion of the so-called ulama owes to their poor understanding of Islam’s mission and vision. The early Muslims are known for scores of military victories, Cultural Revolution, educational expansion and huge state-building successes. The Islamic mission and vision –as revealed in the Holy Qur’an and taught by the Prophet (peace be upon him) were expressed through their deeds. The Islamic state and its policies became a wonderful showcase of Islam’s sublime beauties.
The early Muslims raised Islam not only as a religion of obligatory rituals but also as a formidable civilizational force. But these ulama didn’t learn much from the social, political and cultural history of the early Muslims. They are more focussed on the Prophet (peace be upon him)’s moral, behavioural and spiritual attributes and his narratives called hadees. Such ignorance of Islam’s early history and its socio-political concepts could make them unfit to play any leadership role in the Muslim World. As a result, these so-called ulama had to withdraw from the frontline of ideological, political and military combat. They could take only the back seats and turned silent. Whereas, the history of the golden days of Islam tells otherwise. The task of ruling, guiding and leading the ummah always remained the territory of the religious scholars. As long as the Prophet (peace be upon him) was alive, such a key role was always in his hand. After his death, the role was undertaken in succession by the next most religious man in the ummah–as happened during the rule of the rightly guided four khalifa. Therefore, it is the legacy of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his rightly guided companions that the best Muslims must be in the central stage of the state. And they must take the driving seats in every step of its governance, defence and expansion. If all the passengers of a bus are alcoholic and get intoxicated, the bus will still reach the destination if the driver is sound and competent. The same is true with a state. Hence, withdrawal from politics is indeed the betrayal of the core legacy of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his best companions. Such betrayal always causes the most disastrous consequence. In fact, because of such a betrayal, the whole Muslim World now stands seized from all sides by the worst enemies. It is indeed the collective failure of the Muslims.
Politics itself is the only gateway to access the driving seat of a statecraft. The rulers execute their policies only through politics. For that, they use and abuse the state infrastructures. Hence, rejecting politics is itself rejecting a powerful tool. For doing the best for Islam and the people, to be good is not enough. It needs to be strong and possess the necessary means as well. Politics and statecraft give that strength. How could it be possible for the early Muslims to build the finest civilization on earth and emerge as the most powerful World Power without the power of statecraft? One can be a saint sitting in a tent or cave, but he can never be a builder of a state or civilization. Nor can he set values, implement the Divine law, give protection to the oppressed, and deliver justice to the victims. Hence staying away from politics is not only the neglect of the assigned role but also a huge crime against Islam and Muslims. It is the crime of providing war-free victory to the enemies. Politics is the tool of empowering people by giving them the basic human rights like voting rights, rights of free expression and rights to access the corridor of power. Hence people without participation in politics become powerless and create empty space for the enemies. Thus the non-political elements in a society help sustain enemies’ occupation. Such inaction is a grave crime in Islam. The so-called non-political ulama are committing such a crime.
Legacy of Prophet (peace be upon him) ignored
The enemy occupation always causes awful havoc for Muslims. It is indeed the occupation of Shaitan. It makes it impossible to practice full Islam. To protect Muslims from such terrible catastrophes and to provide a safe space, the great Prophet of Islam (peace be upon him) needed to free the state from enemies’ grip. He took arms in his own hand. His companions did the same. Hence it stands as the greatest legacy of the Prophet (peace be upon him) that could deliver the greatest benevolence to mankind. He could save millions of people from eternal hellfire. Today, more than 1.5 billion people are Muslim because of him. For such a historical good work, more than 60 percent of companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) had to sacrifice their lives. As a result, the state and its institutions could be effectively used as a powerful value-adding tool. The best humans in the whole human history could be produced only because of such a state-supported value-adding process. In that effort, the Holy Qur’an was used as the textbook.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) taught his companions not only the Holy Qur’an but also sociology, psychology, philosophy, history, politics, administration, warfare and other fundamental social sciences. Since the Prophet (peace be upon him) wasn’t sent to promote only some religious rituals but to build a holistic human civilisation, such elements of knowledge are essential. The Prophet (peace be upon him)’s own teacher was All-knowing Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala. In those days, there was no school or college in Arabia. His mosque-based school in Medina was the only teaching institute. And the Prophet (peace be upon him) was its whole-time teacher. The best governors, the best administrators, the best judges, the warriors, and the best generals of the whole human history got their education and training in that mosque-based institute. If the politics of manipulating the state institutions had been in the hands of evil forces, would it have been possible for the Prophet (peace be upon you) to operate such a Divine value-adding process in the midst of the kuffar occupation. Later on, Muslims ignored such methodology of the Prophet (peace be upon him); as a result, they lost the past glory.
It was the Prophet’s (peace be upon you) Divine sociological concept that every human is born as a pure Muslim. He or she grows up as a Muslim or a Christian or a Jew or an idolater depending on societal, cultural, political and educational influences. Such a concept makes political, educational and cultural engineering indispensable for nurturing people with a specific moral and ideological mould. In the process of humanising or dehumanising humans and in corrupting or correcting people’s character, the most decisive role is played by the social, cultural, educational and intellectual environments that are raised by the ruling elites and their political, cultural and educational institutions. This is why the state-run institutions of Pharaoh and the state’s political cum cultural milieu could make the common people king-worshipping criminals. They participated in the crimes of Pharaoh. Likewise, the Indian Hindu autocrats and the supportive priests could make the common people cow, snake or idol worshipping psychopaths. But in causing dehumanisation, the success of the western imperialists and their state institutions is extremely huge and catastrophic. They could make people perfect racist, coloniser, imperialist, genocider, phaedophils, ethnic cleanser, slave trader, gas chamber feeder and atomic bomber. These torchbearers of so-called modernity could kill 75 million people only in two World Wars. They broke all records of criminality on the earth.
Politics: the decisive tool
Whoever understands Islam and Prophet (peace be upon him)’s successful methodology, can’t ignore or detest politics. Politics is not only about ruling a country. It is also about governing people’s faith, education, culture, trade, and lifestyle. It is about framing constitutions, building institutions, enforcing laws, doing the good things and eradicating the evils. It is about educating the people, protecting and promoting ideas, securing the securities for the citizens and the state. It is about mobilising the people, building and cementing the bondages, protecting the borders, making friends with the neighbours and conducting war against the enemies. Hence, politics is everywhere. In an Islamic state, it is about implementing Islamic rules and promoting the Vision of Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala. It is all about ibadah. Without engaging in politics, how one can practise Islam? How can one implement sharia, hudud, shura, jihad and other obligatory Qur’anic basics? Politics is indeed embedded in every step of practising Islam. All great civilizational achievements in human history like human rights, women’s rights, abolition of slavery, abolition of colonialism, end of enemy occupation and many other good deeds owe to political struggles of the common people and the political elites. The great iconic personalities of Islam like Imam Hussain (ra), Imam Abu Hanifa, Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal, Imam Ibne Taimiyah, and many others had to suffer severe persecution and some of them even embraced martyrdom due to their political thoughts and actions.
Whoever is insane can’t understand the worth of life-saving medicine. They even run away from the treatment. Those who are insane conceptually don’t behave differently either. They detest and keep themselves away from politics. It owes to their inadequacy of knowledge -not only on political science but also on social sciences. Since such sciences are not taught in religious schools, such ignorance is quite deeper among the so-called ulama. Hence they fail to realize that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his rightly guided khalifa were not only the religious leader, but also the political leader of the ummah. They were the Head of the state. How can a Muslim reject their practice and tradition (sunnah)? Without engaging in politics, is it possible to be a full Muslim? In fact, political training is indispensable to lead the Muslims wisely and successfully in the war-prone international arena. Otherwise, crippling incompetence ensues and Muslims become incomplete and imperfect Muslims. Because of these incomplete Muslims and their political incompetence, the Muslim Ummah has been trapped in the current quagmire.
Politics is a science of organising, mobilising and governing people, societies and states for continuous betterment of lives and institutions. Human civilizations are indeed the outcome of such collective efforts of men and women of a state. Such an embedded instinct propels humans to sacrifice their time, wealth, energy, even life to bring changes in the country they live in. Animals do not possess such an instinct; they survive only to eat, drink and procure. Hence, animals can’t build any civilisation; nor can build the people with the animal instinct. A Muslim must possess the necessary political instinct to fit into Islam’s own framework of vision, mission and objective. Only those who fit into the Vision of Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala can engage in jihad and attain shahadah (martyrdom). The Vision is “li’yuzhirahu alad’dini kullihi.” It means that His prescribed code of life (deen) should prevail over all other deens. That was true for the companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him). That is why all of them joined jihad and a majority of them attained shahada. But those who claim to be the traditional ulama or moderate Muslim have taken a different path. In their path, there is no Islamic state, no jihad, no shahada and no place for sharia and khilafah. So, it runs far away from the path of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his rightly guided companions. So, no drone or missile falls on the heads of these deviated pseudo-Muslims. Rather, all the despotic rulers of the Muslim countries keep their door open to welcome them. Even the enemies of Islam spread prayer mats for them in their palaces.
The crime of inaction
In the golden days of Islam, building and defending an Islamic state called khilafah always occupied the central part of Muslims’ agenda. They used to spend wealth, fight wars and sacrifice lives for that. Today, it is either ignored or remains as a very peripheral issue in the life of most Muslims. It is a non-issue for the so-called ulama. Some people think casting a vote every 4 or 5 years is enough to discharge the responsibility. They play little or no role in Islamisation of the state. As a result of such inaction, most Muslim states stay incapacitated to do any meaningful service to Islam and Muslims. Inaction has no place in Islam; Muslims pleases Allah Sub’hana wa Tala only through benevolent deeds for other humans. This way he or she works as His viceroy. An Islamic state works as the most powerful tool to do the best deeds for mankind. It becomes the most effective instrument to save people from persecution in this world and from hellfire in the hereafter. Muhammad bin Qasim – a brave Muslim general hurried with his Army to save the oppressed Hindu people of Sind from a tyrant ruler. But now the Muslim rulers and their armies stand silent while Muslims are persecuted in their neighbouring countries. Sometimes, they become part of the persecution. Such collaborators of evil are huge in number in the Muslim World. For example, the former Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf and his cronies collaborated with the US in the invasion of Afghanistan and handed over hundreds of innocent people to the Americans to be kept in Guantanamo Bay prison. The former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak didn’t allow even the injured Muslims of Gaza to enter Egypt while they were heavily bombed by Israel. Initially, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina didn’t allow the boats of tormented Rohynga Muslims to get nearer to the seashore of the country. However, later on, she had to accept them because of international pressure. The Syrian and Iraqi refugees didn’t receive any access to Saudi Arabia and other oil-rich Gulf states. It is shameful and awful that the Syrian refugees needed to sail their unsafe boat to cross the Mediterranean Sea to get shelter in Europe. Many of them drowned in the sea. Many women were raped on the way. But that didn’t raise any empathy in the heart of the rich Arab sheikhs. These are the harsh reality that tells a lot about the incompetence, inhumanity and criminality of the rulers who now rule the Muslim World.
Muslim countries: unsafe for Islamists
Under any despotic rule, a Muslim state never works as a safe haven for Islam and Muslims. Such a country, like any other kuffar country turn equally hostile to Islam. Even many non-Muslim countries score better than these so-called Muslim coutries. So, thousands of political activists and intellectuals from countries under the fascist rule get political asylum in western countries. Since Islam is a complete code of life, it can never be fully practised in a tent, cave or village; neither in the premises of mosques, madrasas and seminaries. How can one practise full Islam without practising sharia, hudud, shura, khelafa and jihad? It needs a conducive and enabling environment for an Islamic state. This is why the prophet of Islam and his companions had to build a state afresh. How can a Muslim ignore such a great legacy of the Prophet (peace be upon him)? Communism ceased to exist as a political power and as a viable ideological concept after the collapse of Soviet Russia in 1991. Communism now survives only in Das Kapital –Karl Marx’s book. The same has happened to Qur’anic Islam after the ruin of the core Islamic state. Now, sharia, hudud, shura, jihad, khilafah and other Divine prescriptions are found only in the Holy Qur’an and in the books of Islamic fiq’h. These have no place in Muslims’ life; nor in any Muslim state!
Surprisingly, after all this grotesque deviation from the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) legacy, Muslims still think that Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala is pleased with them. They think they will be forgiven and will be bestowed with a place in paradise! In the Holy Qur’an, Allah Sub’han wa Ta’ala reiterated the same funny belief of the Jewish people. They were given sharia in Torah. They were asked to establish an Islamic state and practise sharia. But they betrayed the decree of Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala. But still, they claim that they are the chosen people of the Lord and will definitely enter paradise. Allah Sub’han wa Ta’ala never fulfills the wishful thinking of the rebels. Full submission to all commands of Allah Sub’han wa Ta’ala is the key to paradise. And submission to Allah means submission to His Qur’an. One gets disqualified for it by any form of rebellion against a single Qur’anic rule. Those who fully submit to Him are called Muslim; there is no scope of partial submission. And those who are rebels are called kafir. It is warned in surah Al Imran, verse 102, “Don’t die without becoming a Muslim.” So the full submission to Allah Sub’hana wa Ta’ala’s decrees is crucial. But awfully such submission is missing in Muslims’ life. In fact, their politics, culture, education, judiciary, statecraft and state-run institutions have become the showcase of their partial Islam and rebellion against full Islam. 1st edition 10/03/2017; 2nd edition 03/11/2021