By Tariq Choudry
Orlando, FL–May 13, 2009–Societies are building blocks of future generations. It is important for the social system to stay intact, provide a comprehensive system of cohesion and inter-community dialogue that cultivates an environment for open communication promoting cultural values, and encouraging exchange of information that is vital for newer generations to thrive in todayâ€™s multifaceted cultures. Todayâ€™s society is full of bigotry and bias towards Muslims in particular.
One only needs to look around and speculate how diverse the universe is and how fragile the relationships are for communities and families to prevent from fracturing from external venomous vials full of detestation and pre-ponderous plans to obliterate delicate societies as fragile as ours. We have received a whole lot more from the society and expect a whole lot more â€“ true. Nonetheless, when was the last time we offered something of value to add to the society?
It is true that diverse societies form social system and follow it through a system of acceptance, which is displayed how they interact among each other and with the whole of society. Todayâ€™s societies are a blend of cultures from around the world, which makes it even more challenging and desirable to ponder upon the destitution and culmination of homogeneous society. Now, the important question that arises has to do with who should follow who and why! The debate can be as prolonged as Shakespeareâ€™s novel and still would not provide an amiable answer. Must a group follow another lies on how one distinguishes otherâ€™s views and predomination of rules that follow. Alternatively, the idea can be as simple as following the pure Islamic Shariah and not strangle each other with quivering views and conflicting ideas of self-interests or self proclaimed rustic views. However, to do that one has to be open minded and pretty darn tolerant as Islam teaches us. Are we truly a follower of Sunnah and Islamic teachings depicting same values depends upon who we ask and what we expect to hear.
It is a generally accepted fact that our social system of self-respect and tolerance has been damaged since recent centuries. One can go back in time as far back as Ninth century; during these last 500-600 years, science has seemed to be dominated by the countries of the Western world. When one studies about the West, names such as Galileo, Newton, Aristotle, Socrates, Plato, Euclid, Gutenberg (just to name some) comes to mind. We think of famous Americans Henry Ford, and the Wright Brothers as inventors of the automobile and airplanes, but the West was not always on top, as it would seem. Henry Ford never invented the automobile, and the Wright Brothers were not actually the first people in flight.
Islamic areas of the world were at one point some of the most advanced places on the planet when it came to technological advancement and science. The Islamic parts of the world indeed were more prominent in technological progress than any of European centuries after the fall of Rome in the year of 476. Muslim doctors were removing cataracts with needles, made improvements on Chinese paper, and even housed the mentally insane in psychiatric hospitals, which were non-existent in Europe anywhere. To name a few bright Muslim scientists, one that comes to mind may be the names of Abbas Ibn Firnas, Abu-al-Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Kathir al-Farghani (Alfraganus), and Ya qub ibn Ishaq al-Kindi (Alkindus) and Abu Abd Allah Muhammad ibn Jabir ibn Sinan al-Raqqi al-Harrana al-Sabi al-Battani (Albategnius).
Last but not least was one of the greatest mathematical minds from out of the Islamic Golden Age. His name was Albategnius, which was Latinized. He was well known for his mathematical achievements like solving trigonometric problems and adding solutions, which thus influence trigonometric functions. He also determined that the solar year was 365 days, 5 hours, 46 minutes and 24 seconds and was correct by todayâ€™s standards. He also made corrections to the Earthâ€™s axis of rotation and the Sunâ€™s apogee. All of these things without the aide of any satellite taking pictures from space.
All these arguments prove one aspect of those Muslimsâ€¦ they were all pious and true believers free from self-creed and determined to maintain a common and esteemed place in the world.
Letâ€™s look around the world today and put your finger on a single Muslim country out of 60 or so that has an established government, let alone a â€œShariah Governmentâ€, offering similar achievements in science and technology, offering peaceful society, tranquility, justice, harmony among diverse groups, social system of caring and self reliance. Nevertheless, this list can go on. Instead, what we experience is broken societies full of disgust, filching stewards of government, dishonesty, greed, deceitful acts in a show off society flinching away humility and pious pedigree. Are we proud of our societies is the question every one of us must answer with honesty. Surprisingly, on the surface, we all claim to be the followers of the greatest religion of Allah (SWT) ostensibly offering quilting random prayers seldom make us a pure form of society that it is really meant to be. Have we ever wondered how stubborn we have become and how insane are our societies and how shameful it is in the eyes of non-believers, we so claim those KAFIRS who are not following the message of Islam! How can we live a life in denial full of deplorable flaunt in fletching turmoil.
We must come to terms with what must be done to fix the obviously broken social system and start adhering to social norms that are acceptable not only islamically but socially by living a simple yet humble life full of grace and predictable behavior if we are to see a respectful future for our generations. We must build a bridge between the East and West; and ourselves and our youth that can take us into the 21st century with grace and tranquility offering a stable and respectful place in the world. The only way it seems possible is if we follow the basic tenants of Islam by offering help to the needy instead of clinching our desires with bragging styles and racing to yield others by way of looking down upon with neglect and dishonor. When was the last time we arrived at a hostsâ€™ place on-time? When was the last time we kept our promise? Likewise, when was the last time we looked back at a needy person and offered help by sacrificing or giving from what was indeed heartily dear, to others! And last but not least, when was the last time we existed the Masjid after offering prayer pushing and peddling thru others trying to squeeze thru by clinching human path-a-way ushering away doggedly forcing thru clumsy skeletal of elderly!
If none of the above is so acceptable, then the day has arrived when our society shall determine to remind ourselves of a creation of society full of demeanor, respect, and civility that we genuinely deserve. May Allah SWT guide us all so we can truly exercise the teachings of Islam and follow our beloved prophetâ€™s (PBUH) Sunnah in a pure form. This is the only way to eternal salvation, not the ways we are accustomed to. Dear friends, lets make a determination to first change ourselves before asking our leaders or the West to embrace change! Moving forward is only then possible.