Thursday, July 15, 2010

Religion by Iqbal !

Iqbal says about religion in his very famous lectures on The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam that:
“Religion is not a departmental affair; it is neither mere thought, nor mere feeling, nor mere action; it is an expression of the whole man.”

Iqbal says that religion by its root is not just a ‘departmental affair’ rather it is superior to that in every sense, it is actually a belief that subjugates all the actions, notions and aspirations of man. It is not something traditional, not something limited, not something confined to a certain circle of rituals or practices, it is rather something that touches every aspect of human behavior and commands it according to its own will. As Allah says in the holy Quran that:
وَمَنْ أَحْسَنُ دِينًا مِّمَّنْ أَسْلَمَ وَجْهَهُ لِلَّهِ وَهُوَ مُحْسِنٌ وَاتَّبَعَ مِلَّةَ إِبْرَاهِيمَ حَنِيفًا وَاتَّخَذَ اللَّهُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ خَلِيلًا ‌[4-125]
And who has a better religion than he who submits himself entirely to Allah? And he is the doer of good (to others) and follows the faith of Ibrahim, the upright one, and Allah took Ibrahim as a friend.

Submitting yourself to something is religion according to this verse. (And surely Allah Subhanawatala knows best)

It is indeed very disappointing that we as Muslim Ummah have taken the zeitgeist for religion as something that is very much confined in its influence, now we are left with only dogmas which we consider as religion while it is not like that. We don’t want to burn our dead why? Because it is not in our religion and we are ‘Muslims’ by religion and the rest of the things we do 24/7 are just taken for granted as being in islam. Actually what we do day and night and months and years and in our whole lives is our religion, what we strive for is our religion, and what we desire for is our religion.

Similarly, Iqbal says that religion is not a feeling or a thought as he goes on to explain the faith we have in our religion that:
"….Yet it cannot be denied that faith is more than mere feeling. It has something like a cognitive content, and the existence of rival parties— scholastics and mystics— in the history of religion shows that idea is a vital element in religion…."

After reading this I have to admit that what Karl Marx said about religion is again just a department of religion in general. In his very famous saying he says that:
“…Religious distress is at the same time the expression of real distress and the protest against real distress. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of a spiritless situation. It is the opium of the people…”

Yes it might be that when a person is in danger or troubled he remembers Allah and he calls Him with humility and humbleness but when this troubled situation waivers, he again forgets Allah and again embraces the worldly gains and his previous beliefs as his religion.You know from history that the infidels of Makkah did this and did not deny that Allah alone was their creator but when it came to the question of subjugating their lives according to Allah's will and to give away what they had from world made them to flee from the teachings of Islam, they went back to their supposed religion.
In The Prophet, by Kahlil Gibran, Almustafa the most widely read English poet in the world after Shakespeare and Lao Tzu says says on the question of religion that:
“Have I spoken this day of aught else? Is not religion all deeds and all reflection…?”

Yes, definitely here Kahlil Gibran and Iqbal have the same voice about religion that it is all of our deeds and reflections. This is what Iqbal has rightly said about religion that it is the expression of the whole man. Now, it is up to us to decide what is our expression or our religion. Is it our own self that we have made our expression or is it the worldly gains or is it the country in which we live in is our expression or is it our family??? What Allah wants to be our religion is that:
إِنِ الْحُكْمُ إِلَّا لِلَّهِ أَمَرَ أَلَّا تَعْبُدُوا إِلَّا إِيَّاهُ ذٰلِكَ الدِّينُ الْقَيِّمُ وَلٰكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ ‌[12-40]
He has commanded that you shall not serve aught but Him; this is the right religion but most people do not know.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Religion's importance - A poll

I was once very curious about knowing that why do people have ‘religion’ so much in their minds and why do they prefer ‘some things’ to be exclusively decisive by religion. So I thought of conducting a poll through SMS and to some people I verbally asked this question that:

Why is religion important to mankind?

Below are the different replies that came to me, and I would like to share it with everyone.

Moavizz - you can't love without a way to follow, a goal to achieve and a destination to walk towards, Religions satisfactorily do that.

Faizan Rasool – It is the objective and identity of life.

Razzam – For brotherhood it is necessary to have religion.

Zeeshan - Religion is important to mankind because it provides the people the social and Islamic benefits. It also provides a platform of humanities that equalize the human beings to single status.
As we know that Islam is the best religion that serves the whole community without discrimination.

Ubair - Mankind is called mankind because of religion, if there is no religion there is surely no mankind.

Salman - Agar insaan mazhab ki parvi na karey to phirhar insaan apnay tor tareekay ke mutabiq zindagi guzarna chahay ga. If humans do not follow any religion they will wish to spend their lives according to their own ways, due to this a societal disorder will erupt. It is same as a rich person will murder a poor and the poor will not get justice because rich person has superiority over the poor because of his wealth. But no religion in the world gives permission to any prejudice. You either let the humans follow their desires or you can subjugate them under one religion which has its foundations based on nature and that religion is islam, we use the word 'deen' for islam that is superior to word 'religion'.

Bilal Murshid - human powers and his access is limited when he meets different things which are beyond his scope he has to take help of beliefs (religion), i.e. he starts assuming points he cannot reach.
Our Muslim belief is that, God helped Man and Himself showed a brief picture of His whole creations through 'ilhami kutb' (holy books), messengers and some other sources.

Usman Ahmed - In this world religion is required to create brotherhood and peace among people.

Arif Jahan - Religion is very important because it is a complete code of life. To spend life every human has a concept of objectivity and faith and faith aspires itself from religion.

Abdus Sami - Religion civilizes mankind and describe purpose of life. Without these man will turn into a beast.

Yasir Waheed - It is the nature of man that it needs some regularity and laws and ethics in his life, so he believes in some religion.

Ishtiaq - It is important because every religion provides the path of life to its followers, whether it is wrong or right.

Tehreem - Region gives reason to live. Life after death is the doctrine of every religion, that is an eternal life. If we humans will know that there is no eternal life and life is just on earth then we will like to enjoy our lives through all the means possible due to which social system will be destroyed. Religions teach us to stay in our societal structure and to maintain a balance in it, due to this a global empire is founded and everyone is given the chance to live his life, if this doesn't happen then there might be no life on earth, religions enable humans to put aside power and to think of respect of eachother, if religions are not present on this earth then every person with power will kill the weak because it is a desire of everyone to rule. And in this way life will vanish from this earth, religions compell us to spend lives according to the ways of that religion if we want a good eternal life.

Muhammad Umair - For internal satisfaction and you can that for spiritual satisfaction

Nabeel Safdar - Because it is the reason or objective of the birth of humans.

Muzamil - Because it gives you a reason to live

Hafiz Umair - Because religion is the true identity of mankind or simply a man.

Ijaz - because it is the only way for humanity to please our creator

Arslan Shabir - to know the things we can’t verify from our mind but being a human being these questions come to our mind.

Have your say on these comments if you like.