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Islams Reformers

The bigotry of the religion reformers or bigots of science who surfaced lately to blame all previous scholars, basic fundamental beliefs or practices

exploit other people to

exploit other people to their advantages, we, too, have to care for our own nationality. We, too, have to defend our nationality against our enemies. To do this does not mean to attach a special importance to nationality, for the notion of nationality is based on sentiments, rather than on a scientific essence. Georgy Zaidân, the author of The History of Islamic Civilization, writes that the idea of nationalism existed in the beginning of Islam and that even the policy of Hadrat ’Umar (radiy-Allâhu ’anh) was based on this idea. He puts forth Hadrat ’Umar’s (radiy-Allâhu ’anh) endeavours not to leave any polytheists on the Arabian Peninsula as an evidence to prove to this. However, those endeavours were for a national unity based on religious unity. In Christian religion there is not a reasonable principle left. It has taken the shape of superstitions and complicated ceremonies. Moreover, Christians belonging to the same faith, even to the same sect, have been living under the administration of different governments. For this reason, European governments looked for another bond. As a result, religious unity developed into the feeling of nationalism in Europe. Islam, establishing commercial, industrial and social order, includes the idea of nationalism. There is no need for establishing an additional concept of nationalism among Muslims. For this reason, it is written in all books teaching elements of the religion, “Religion (dîn) and nationality (milla) are the same.” Moreover, it will be quite right to say that the Europeans’ suspicions against Islamic religion arise from the fact that there is also a feeling of nationalism in every rule of this religion. If Muslims do not disunite, they will, by getting use of the fact that Islam represents nationality, find a way to overpower many nationalities that have not become firm on the earth. From Islam’s representing nationality, lingual unity also occurs to the mind, and since the adhân and the Qur’ân are recited in the five daily prayers of salât each day in Arabic in all Muslim countries, it provides for this unity. It is for this reason that in order to separate a nation from Islam and annihilate the unity of Muslims, the enemies of Islam try to change the language, grammar and alphabet of that nation. And the severest blow to be inflicted on a nation’s religion comes through this way. As a matter of fact, Muslims in Sicily and Spain have been Christianized with this method. And now, Russians use this sharp weapon to annihilate the îmân in Muslims of Turkistan. Their dungeons, electric furnaces, expulsions in Siberia and merciless massacres cannot be as effective as this sharp weapon. Celâl Nûrî – 90 –

Beg recommends Arabic as a common language for Muslims in his book Ittihâd-i Islâm. Yavuz Sultan Selîm Khan endeavoured for this purpose, and the religious books have been disseminated in Arabic in all Muslim countries in the course of history. Arabic has become a religious language in all Muslim countries. The hadîth says that everybody will speak in Arabic in Paradise. The purpose is not aimed at making every Muslim nation Arabic. While the English language becomes a common language in many countries, no government opposes it. Today it has become a strong necessity for a man of knowledge and science to know one, and even more foreign languages. The Hadîth says, “He who learns the language of a race protects himself against their harm.” It is for this reason that as our youngsters learn Arabic, so it is necessary and useful for them to learn European languages. This may enable them to perform many services which in turn will bring them rewards in the Hereafter. The reason why, for many centuries, Europeans have looked upon us as foreigners is not the difference of national feelings but their not knowing the religion of Islam. The Hadîth says, “If you do not try to bring the wicked amongst you to the right course, that is, if you do not perform alamru bi’l-ma’rûf wa ’n-nahyu ’ani ’l-munkar, Allâhu ta’âlâ will give upon you so bad calamities that in order to get rid of them even the entreaties to Allâhu ta’âlâ of the good ones among you will no longer avail.” The 110th âyat of the sûrat âl ’Imrân commands Muslims to perform al-amru bi ’l-ma’rûf wa ’n-nahyu ’ani ’l-munkar. When Yavuz Sultan Selim Khan said to the non- Muslims under his rule, “Either become Muslims or I will put you to the sword,” Islamic scholars said that this would not be right, that is, they performed an-nahyu ’ani ’l-munkar. So, the Sultan gave it up. There may be eccentric people who consider his behaviour wrong. Indeed, this behavior of that honoured Sultan, who yielded to the religious scholars and understood that these unfair, groundless religious feelings could not be of Islam, is worth praising. The difference between religious ideas and feelings and national ideas and feelings appears on such delicate points as this. National thoughts of the irreligious may neglect right and justice, but Islamic thoughts cannot, for the virtues such as right and justice are within the boundaries of Islam. Islam has contributed a high, pure feeling of justice to mankind. After the First World War, courts of justice were established in Istanbul in order to exile and kill the guilty – 91 –

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