Two Divergent Groups among the Theologians
With regard to this section, our theological class— if the term be correct for there is no clerical or priestly class in Islam— is divided into two divergent groups. One of them is emphatically opposed to worldly pursuits and does not want any truck with those who do, but it is also completely unceroned with the question as to what causes and factors are responsible for producing such atheistic tendencies among the privileged Muslim classes. It abhors having any contact with them and does little by way of purging them of their erroneous beliefs. The other group associates with them to the full and seeks advantages in terms of wordily again as a result of its association. It pays no attention to their spiritual redemption. Hence, this group has no call to give or religious pride to display. it seems to have abandoned those sections to their fate and has no solicitude for correction and reformation. Read more... (1041 words, estimated 4:10 mins reading time)
The Muslim Standpoint: Read more... (919 words, estimated 3:41 mins reading time)
Why is Islam Opposed to Factionalism?: Read more... (473 words, estimated 1:54 mins reading time)
Why Irreligiousness Succeeds:
But how did this new faith infiltrate the Islamic World? How did it come to acquire the strength to engulf Muslims within their own homes; what can explain the mighty hold it enjoys over the hearts and minds of men? All these questions require careful examination. Read more... (992 words, estimated 3:58 mins reading time)
A Forsaken Issue:
This, indeed, is apostasy but it has managed to evade the notice of Muslims. The reason being that its victims do not go to the church or the synagogue, nor do they proclaim their conversion. Society, consequently, remains blissfully blind to it. It does not take exception to apostates. It neither criticises them nor punishes them nor does it enforce other social sanctions. Apostates retain their place and rights in society and even get a chance to dominate it. Read more... (290 words, estimated 1:10 mins reading time)
The Religion of Irreligiousness:
What, then, is this new faith —however shy its protagonists may feel in giving it the name of a faith? It consists of, as we have said earlier, the rejection of that All-Knowing, Well-Informed Being who is the Creator of the Worlds, the Owner of Destiny and the Architect of the life of Futurity, the Last Day, Heaven, Hell, Divine Reward and Punishment, Prophecy, Apostleship and the Holy Law, of the Truth that God has ordained for all mankind, and of obedience to the Holy Prophet. It rejects the idea that all salvation and enlightenment are dependent on that loyalty, rejects the principle that Islam is that final and eternal Message from the Divine which enfolds all that is good in this world and the Next, and embodies a programme of life which is higher and superior to every other system, and of the fact that the world has been created for man and man for God. Read more... (385 words, estimated 1:32 mins reading time)
Islam has experienced many an apostatic upsurge during the course of its history. The most powerful of them was the one that manifested itself among the Arab tribes soon after the Prophet’s death. By this we mean the mightily rebellious movement that was nipped in the bud by Caliph Abu Bakr through his matchless courage and strength of will. The then, again, the second great onslaught of apostasy within Islam was the widespread swing towards Christianity with the expulsion of the Muslims from Spain. This stole into other countries too that were then under the demonation of the Western Christian powers, and was actively supported and encouraged by Christian missionaries. Apart from these well-known episodes, there are also some stray instances such as that of a few faint-hearted Muslims going over to some other faith in India. But such cases have been very rare, and the fact is that with the exception of the large-scale conversion of Muslims to Christianity in Spain, if it can be described as an apostatic movement, the general opinion of Islamic historians is that the Muslim millat has never seriously had to encounter a general threat of apostasy. Read more... (1088 words, estimated 4:21 mins reading time)
The ancient world had divided life into two compartments, religious and the secular ; and the result was that a wedge had been driven between those who selected one of these as the pursuit of their life. Oftentimes, the two groups were at loggerheads with one another, for, the ‘world’ and ‘religion’ were to them incompatible spheres of human life. Every man had to choose one of the two since nobody could be expected to travel in two boats simultaneously. The prevalent view was that the path of salvation Jay not through the rough and tumble of life, but away from the social, economic and political problems of worldly pursuits. No concept of religion which bars the gates to material progress and acquisition of power, riches and fame could be of interest to intelligent, capable and ambitious persons with the result that a great segment of humanity had delivered itself from the rigorous discipline of asceticism which bad come to be associated with religion. By withdrawing themselves from the virtuous energies, these men had prevented the great importance of morals from appearing perceptibly in public affairs. The State had revolted against the Church and made itself free from all obligations to it. This hideous schizophrenia not only divested what was called worldly, from the gifts of spiritual beatitude, but also gave birth to the modern faithlessness and agnosticism of Europe which is now threatening to inundate the entire world, if only, because of its political and cultural supremacy. The present wave of crass materialism, loss of faith and moral debasement is but a direct consequence of the division between the spirit and matter invented by the old pagan civilizations. Read more... (1302 words, estimated 5:12 mins reading time)
Islam preaches unalloyed and absolute unity of God and rejects every form of anthropomorphism. Still, it employs this similitude to drive home the rank and dignity of man in the eyes of God. Has any other religion or philosophical thought accorded a nobler place to human beings than Islam?
The Prophet of Islam taught that the surest way to attract blessings of God was to be kind and considerate to others.
“The Most Compassionate (God) is kind on those who are kind to others. If you would show kindness to those who live on the earth, He who lives in the Heaven, shall shower His blessings on you.” (Abu Da’ud) Read more... (1925 words, estimated 7:42 mins reading time)