Peace for Humanity: The Root Cause of Terrorism: By Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

These days there is a lot of mention in news of incidents that happened over the past few days in France and Beirut. Six places are reported to have been attacked by terrorists in and around Paris. A report in The Times of India of November 15 has mentioned that during the shooting by gunmen at one of the places, witnesses said that ‘There were shouts of Allahu Akbar’. That is, although the terrorists were killing human beings, they were making use of the slogan ‘God is great’. This is a very strange incident. The Quran says that killing one innocent person is like killing all of humanity. (5:32) Then, what kind of religion were the terrorists inspired by? It is certainly not the religion of God. Although the gunmen shouted ‘God is great’, through their actions they showed that ‘Other-than-God is great’. The greatest issue facing the present times is that those who believe in God and in Islam have turned violent. Everyday we get to hear news that terrorists have killed innocent people, both Muslim and non-Muslim, in places of gathering, mosques, and even graveyards. In this matter, religious scholars have not properly played their role. There have been cases where the ulema or Islamic scholars have, by consensus, issued a fatwa on a matter. But this has not happened in the matter of violence and extremism. If all scholars collectively issue a statement saying that acts of violence happening today bear no relation with God or with Islam and that these acts are wholly impermissible in Islam, then incidents of this kind can be prevented from happening. Therefore, the need of the hour is that all Islamic scholars should jointly condemn incidents of violence carried out in the name of Islam and issue a fatwa saying that violence perpetrated by terrorists has no relation whatsoever with the religion of Islam.Political Stability versus AnarchyIt is important to understand why Muslims have taken to the path of violence or engaged in militancy in modern times. According to a Hadith, the Prophet of Islam had warned Muslims from getting involved in the violent culture: ‘When the sword is used among my people, it will not be withdrawn from them till the Day of Resurrection.’ (Sunan Abu Dawood). Why is there this prediction in the Hadith? I realized that those who have given a political interpretation to Islam are most responsible for this, because it was they who developed the idea that the rule of Islam should be established throughout the world. This political goal was baseless and had no relation with Islam. However, this idea was given at the time when Muslim empires—Ottoman empire and Mughal empire—had been demolished. The resulting conditions in Muslim countries where earlier empires existed made Muslims think that regaining their lost political glory was the right target for them and thus the political interpretation of Islam gained ground in spite of not having any basis in the Quran or Hadith. Muslims were at one time able to establish empires such as the Umayyad, Abbasid, Mughal, Ottoman. But the purpose of these empires was not to establish an Islamic system (Islamic nizam). There is no proof of this in history. These empires were actually dynasties or family rule. The advantage of these empires was that they gave political stability to Muslim countries. A long period of stability prevailed in Muslim society due to these empires, the most important benefits of which included the preservation of the Quran, compilation of the sayings of the Prophet, and development of various Islamic sciences such as jurisprudence. This was also the period in which Muslims embarked on disseminating their religion far and wide and as a result Islam spread to other places. Institutions such as mosques and madrasas could develop because of the atmosphere of peace and stability. Islamic scholars of the time endorsed these empires because they provided stability to people to work and grow. The dynastic pattern of rule began from the time of Amir Muawiyah (661 – 680 AD) and continued right up to the twentieth century. None of the fuqaha or religious scholars issued a fatwa nor did they initiate any movement against the empires and their dynastic pattern of rule. Islamic scholars even went to the extent of declaring that revolting against Muslim rulers was unlawful. The thirteenth century Islamic scholar Imam al-Nawawi says in his commentary on the Sahih Muslim that khuruj (revolt) against the ruler is haram or unlawful according to the consensus of the ulema, even if the ruler is fasiq (corrupt) or zalim (oppressive). >>>>

Source: Peace for Humanity: The Root Cause of Terrorism: By Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

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