I am not a scholar of Islam, but in the events that are taking place now a day, certain things seem obviously wrong. As I resumed work partially today, I could not keep these thoughts out of my mind and decided to pen down all the confusion and resentment inside me.
In the times of oppression of Muslims by the Quraish, Muslims persisted patiently and continued to strengthen their Emaan. When they were persecuted in Makkah, they prayed and learnt Quran whilst they faced oppression. Ties were cut down with the Muslims and they had to literally starve for three years. They were exiled from their home and went to live away in another land as muhajirs. They continued to grow with their Emaan and belief in Allah, till they strengthened themselves so much that that regained Makkah back. And at that point the Prophet displayed mercy to the people of Makkah who had persecuted them, so much so that they all entered the fold of Islam.
Before Muslims actually reclaimed Makkah, all that while they kept learning and seeking knowledge and excelling themselves in all fields and building up a strong economy. They trained themselves to fight the enemy by putting their faith in Allah and living on the principles of Islam. Among them were some who were reserved and unwilling when war was waged on their community. The Prophet (PBUH) never forced them to join the way and allowed them to stay back. His never imposed his will on other people, although his companions would do anything for their beloved Prophet (PBUH) if they ever got a hint.
According to a Hadith, “I heard the Prophet (PBUH) saying, “Any man whom Allah has given the authority of ruling some people and he does not look after them in an honest manner, will never feel even the smell of Paradise.”Sahih Muslim – Volume 9, Book 89, Number 264
Our separatist leaders have quite some following, both paid and unpaid. But they are our so called leaders, since they don’t represent the mindset of the majority on majority occasions. By calling these strikes they are not being honest to their people. They are not looking after their people. Though they are not officially our leaders yet and they do not comprise our government, but they are governing people more than the actual government is. And, if they are going to be our future leaders, then they are going to prove worse than the present government because of the apathy they are already showing towards their wards.
By saying they are governing the people already, doesn’t mean that people are willingly allowing them to govern them. Last Wednesday when they had called for sit in protests, many private vehicles were plying on the roads, many business establishments opened, local shops wanted some business and people needed their daily stuff badly. Things went on normally when the next day their hired goons and other similar mindset people ransacked shops and broke cars and set ablaze some vehicles. Some of these “goons” (no other word can describe them better) threw away food stuff like meat etc on the roads and forced people to shut down their businesses. And when nothing worked they broke cars and were questioning people who claimed to be sick and needing medical attention. So much so they were checking their prescriptions and the dates. A normal human being can infer that people wanted to resume normal life, but they were not allowed to. Didn’t this give a signal to the leaders that people were sick of strikes and wanted to resume normal life? Yes definitely it did! And that is why these goons forced people to get confined inside their houses and not even take out their cycles on the roads. Why was the force required? It was simply because people did not want to observe strikes and were against what was being imposed on them unjustly by our so called leaders.
When we protest, our slogan is “Allah-o-Akbar” and “Islam zindabaad”, but are the above actions justified in Islam? If Prophet (PBUH) were here with us, would he let his Ummah do such things? Would he let them make their own brethren suffer? Would he let them cause damage to other Muslim property? Did any of our so called leaders condemn breakage and shop ransacking? Or did it serve their purpose of imposing their will on the people, no matter whether they agreed or disagreed. Where is the Islamic counsel before releasing this strike timetable? Isn’t there one complete Surah dedicated to consultation? Allah says in the Qurah, “And those who answer the call of their Lord and obey Him (in His orders and prohibitions), and establish the Prayer in conformity with its conditions; and whose affairs are by consultation among themselves; and who spend out of what We provide for them (to provide sustenance for the needy, and in God’s cause).” ( Al-Shura, 42:38). Consultation is important for reaching the right decision. Our decisions are reached without due reflection or proper consultation and that is why they always fail. There are individuals in our society at each level who depend only on themselves and are disconnected from others and unconcerned about the opinions of others. These people want to impose their will and thinking on the rest. Just like our leaders and some people who are imposing their thinking by hook or by crook. Such people, even if they happen to be geniuses, are at considerable risk of error, as compared to those who exchange opinions and arguments. And this is not me who is saying all this, this is right from Allah (swt).
Another interesting part of the protest in the last month has been the protests conducted in the local Mosques, at least in my area. In earlier days people would raise slogans from the Masjid speakers and ask people to come out and protest. Now we have gone high tech! There are patriotic songs being played on the Masjid speakers, “Pak sar zameen”, “sarhad paar”, “al-jehaad” etc, that essentially use musical instruments that have been classified as “haraam” in Islam. Whatever the lyrics are, the music is “haraam”. And look at us! We are playing this haraam music from the Masjid speakers. This is our level of Islam, we justify our actions islamically as long as they suit our needs. And we justify this music by concluding the music session with, “Allah-o-Akbar”.
When Muslims were being oppressed, did the Prophet ask them to stop working or to stop learning? In fact he encouraged learning and trade. And learning is what made them strong and excel in their Emaan and helped them in their worldly life and ultimately in the next life. By stopping learning and trade out here, where are our leaders leading us to?
“The Prophet(PBUH)is reported to have directed his companions: “Do not be eager for confrontation with the enemy and seek peace and security from Allah. But when you happen to be confronted by the enemy, be steadfast.” (Al-Bukhari)
The Prophet (PBUH) categorically prohibited pillaging or plundering even in war times. He said: “Plunder is no better than carrion.” (At-Tirmidhi)
The Prophet (PBUH) was asked: “What about one who goes forth in the cause of Allah, but also thinks that he will derive some worldly benefit too?”
He answered: “Such a one will earn no merit,” and he repeated this thrice. (An-Nasai)”
Allah says in the Quran, “Fight in the way of Allah against those who fight against you, but begin not hostilities. Lo! Allah loves not, aggressors.”(Al- Baqarah 2:190)
Now a day the trend here is to begin the hostilities by stone pelting till the situation gets out of control. If there was no stone pelting on the 11th June when Tufail Matto died, the series of events would not have started. That does not mean that the killers are exonerated, that means that our society needs introspection at the root level. We are ready to die for Islam, but going to the mosque five times a day is difficult for us. Our economy is floating in haraam money, its there everywhere but the name given to that money is slightly polished and sounds refined. We need to first rise as a Muslim at a personal level and then rise as an Ummah and see how Allah will help us in our cause InshahAllah.
“And O my people! Give full measure and weight in justice and reduce not the things that are due to the people, and do not commit mischief in the land, causing corruption.” (Surah Hud 11:85)
Abdullah ibn Mas’ood (RA) used to say: “Whoever aids an oppressor or taught him an argument to nullify the right of an ordinary Muslim, has drawn upon himself the anger of Allah.”
We are indeed a community that has drawn on itself the anger of Allah by our corrupt means in all fields of life. May Allah protect us and guide us all to the straight path. Ameen