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April 23rd, 2009

Religious militancy in Pakistan

Rashid Jahangiri has submitted the following post.

In 1974 Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto used religion to rule Pakistan and declared innocent Kalima Tayyaba reciters as kafir. Today Taliban are using religion (Shariat-e-Muhammadi) to rule Pakistan.

On April 22, 2009 the Dawn editorial says:

Sufi’s world

The position held by people who kill those who don’t subscribe to their point of view is diametrically opposed to that of all right-thinking persons. From day one, the stance of these militants who murder in the name of religion has been all too clear. These people are savages, yet we don’t put them behind bars. Why?

I wonder where were people like author of this editorial in 1974 when INNOCENT reciters of Kalima Tayyaba were declared Kafir.

Link to editorial

12 Responses to “Religious militancy in Pakistan”

  1. April 23rd, 2009 at 2:58 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    Where were they? These educated, liberal, anti-Mulla people were busy advising Ahmadis that “now you have been declared non-Muslim in the constitution you should issue renunciations saying: I am not an Ahmadi, I am a Muslim.”

    They even advised us that we can remain Ahmadis at heart in terms of belief (because they knew that Ahmadis are actually Muslims), but in order to placate the general public we must renounce being Ahmadis. In other words, they saw nothing wrong in advising us to be hypocrites!

    Some people who urged us to leave Ahmadiyyat didn’t even pray once a day. Some of them indulged in the dishonest practices that are accepted in Pakistani society. But they were extremely pleased and boastful that according to the constitution they were Muslims.

    The fact that Allah and His Messenger (pbuh) may have something to say about who is a Muslim never occurred to these people at the time.

    So I now ask them: Do you want to be Muslims according to a Taliban constitution? Because now you are the non-Muslims according to the standards of the Taliban!

  2. Should one be surprised when the moral Laws of Quran are coming to their natural fruition in Pakistan?

    27:75. There is nothing hidden in the heavens and the earth but it is recorded in a Book revealing (the Divine decree)

    Moral state of Pakistan for past many decades:

    30:41. Disorder and corruption has prevailed on land and sea owing to the evil (deeds) which people have wrought. The result will be that He will make them taste (in this world) the fruit of (some of) their misdeeds so that they may return (to the right path, giving up their evil ways).

    Which peoples and their President comes to mind by this:

    27:82. And when the judgment becomes due against them (-the unjust) We shall bring forth for them a (grossly) materialistic person which will rule over them…

    Assuredly every soul in Pakistan must be lost as if facing Day of Judgment:

    42:44. As for the person whom Allâh forsakes and adjudges as lost there is no protecting-friend for him except He. And you will find that when the wrongdoers see the punishment (about to overtake them) they will say, `Is there any way back?’

    Dil kay pha-pholay jull uth-aye seenay kay dagh say
    “Blisters of the soul (got) inflamed further by the doubts in the chest”

    Es ghar koh aag lug ghaey ghar kay chiragh say
    “Ah! This house burnt down by its own lamp”

    But, every Muslim deserves the following prayer:

    2:286: “God does not burden any human being with more than he is well able to bear: in his favour shall be whatever good he does, and against him whatever evil he does. “O our Sustainer! Take us not to task if we forget or unwittingly do wrong! “O our Sustainer! Lay not upon us a burden such as Thou didst lay upon those who lived before us! O our Sustainer! Make us not bear burdens which we have no strength to bear! “And efface Thou our sins, and grant us forgiveness, and bestow Thy mercy upon us! Thou art our Lord Supreme: succour us, then, against people who deny the truth! [AMEN]

    [The Holy Quran: Translation by Allama Nooruddin, rendered into English by Abdul Mannan Omar & Amatul Rahman Omar]

    In Germany they first came for the Communists, 
    and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. 

    Then they came for the Jews, 
    and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. 

    Then they came for the trade unionists, 
    and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. 

    Then they came for the Catholics, 
    and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant. 

    Then they came for me — 
    and by that time no one was left to speak up.
    – Martin Niemoller

     Lines by a non-Ahmadi I received recently:

    In Pakistan , they first came for the Ahmedis,
    And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Ahmedi.
    Then they came for the women and girls
    And I didn’t speak up because I was neither a woman or a girl
    Then they came for the ones without a beard
    And I did not speak up because I had a beard
    Then they came for the Shias
    And I didn’t speak up because I was a Sunni
    Then they came for me
    And by that time no one was left to speak for me. 
    Please speak up, because you are next.

  4. Until the muslims learn to seperate church and state they will be plagued with these type of problems. 

    Unfortunatly, the state of affairs for the muslims is not good right now.  And this all comes from the area where the messiah had his most influence.  As a bystander to all of this, it appears that the messiah was not successfull in swaying the hearts of his countrymen.  The pakistani muslims are in big trouble……..

  5. Bashir: Assalam-o-Alaikim

    Mirza Ghulam Ahmed Sahib is not the likes of a biblical messenger who came only for the people and the land he belonged to. Being a Mujaddid he fully accomplished his mission, which was primarily to refresh and contemporize the understanding of the basic doctrine of Islam i.e. The Holy Quran and he thus refocused Islam with Allah as its central figure, Muhmmad PBUH as the absolute last prophet and Quran as un-abrogated text.

    Besides translating Quran himself, he unshackled Islam from dogmas and nurtured a logical view of religion, which we see in various translations of Quran from his followers or others influenced subsequently.

    And it is his modernistic thought that potentially slew the swine and crumbled the cross both during his lifetime and afterwards as well. In doing so, Mirza Ghulam Ahmed firstly elucidated Dajjal (the anti-Christ) that speaks English. Hence to dissolve away Dajjal and its influence, English translation of the Quran is needed.

    Role of Lahore Ahmadiyya Anjuman in English translation of the Quran:

    Muhammad Ali is the first ever Muslim English translator of the Holy Quran, whose 1917 edition is plagiarized by M.H. Shakir (i.e. Muhammadali Habib Shakir of Habib Bank).

    Abdullah Yusuf Ali of Ajuman Himayat Islam would literally almost daily walk across the street (Brandreth Road Lahore) to Ahmadiyya Anjuman to get corrections/reviews by Muhammad Ali for his translation.

    Marmaduke Pickthall, was a regular contributor to “Islamic Review and Muslim India” and co-presenter to the missionary work of Khawaja Kamaluudin – first ever Muslim missionary in the modern West and a peer and close friend of Muhammad Ali.

    Muhammad Asad accepted Islam at Lahore Ahmadiyya Berlin Mosque, probably at hands of then Imam, Saddar-uddin a junior peer and a friend of Muhammad Ali, who himself is the first translator of Quran into German.

    Nooruddin was a senior peer of Muhammad Ali. Late Amatul Rahman Omar was the first ever Muslim woman to translate Nooruddin’s Urdu translation of Quran into English, along with her husband Abdul Mannan Omar.

    No fair-minded person can reject the above contributions.  Lahore Ahmadiyya has no beef with the rejecters of Mirza Sahib, as he is not fundamental for one to be a Muslim. But for the vociferous slanderers of his (that you allude to) who miss the forest for the tree, the following should suffice:

    25:30. And (on that Day) the Messenger will say, `My Lord! my people treated even this Qur’ân (full of blessings) as (a thing) abandoned. [Nooruddin]

    What keeps “traditional” Islam locked in dogmas is the religious franchise that has emerged from natural decline of free thought and lack of moral courage in the Muslim world.  However, given the natural turn of history, Islam is destined for the free thinking West where it is finding a natural medium to grow upon and Islam of the East will need couple of generations more while it goes through its renaissance.

  6. For Ikram:

    I appreciate your response to this topic.  I truly believe that M. ali was a pioneer of progressive thought in Islamic society.  I really admire the person of M. ali sahib.  Although I disagree with him on some things, for the most part his writings have taught me so much. 

    The aaiil also allow women to perform leadership roles in their respective communities.  This is admirable and I love the idea. Tthe aaiil has really peaked my interest. 

    Unfortunately my opinions cant sway the orthodox muslim.  This is where I believe that the mission of HMGA has failed.  I think that HMGA should have started the second Muslim renaissance period, HMGA should have been successful in his lifetime, just like the HP was able to be. 

    If you study hadith from the 3rd century of Islam(Bukhari) it is easy to see that Messiah was suppossed to be victorious.  Without a shadow of doubt, this is the impression that any fair-minded readers can garner.    

    Instead of being victorious, the muslims have failed miserably.  India and pakistan became independent nations in 1947.  The pagans (hindus) have shown themselves to be peaceful and progressive people, meanwhile the muslims have proven themsleves to be savages and bruts.  Ironically this is where the messiah appeared, the messiah’s writings are in the language of these savages, yet these writings have no effect on these people. 

    In conclusion, the messiah failed to rehabilitate his own race of people.  This was not supposed to happen according to Bukhari and others. 

    When will the muslim change?

  7. I rather be fishing, or may be making a case for Islam, Allah, His divine laws, Quran and Muhammad PBUH rather than for Mirza Ghulam Ahmed alone. But I cannot ignore the role of Mirza Sahib for bringing out the pristine attributes of all the above enumerated.

    Mirza Ghulam Ahmed never said that he is going to convert a Muslim to Islam but on the contrary he respected their views, as long they were not in conflict with Islam, Allah, Quran and Muhammad PBUH. Burden for a Muslim is on Muslim himself to challenge his physical/intellectual/moral/spiritual/economic/academic state and he can use the readily available Quran and Muhammad’s example. How these two resources bring out a great nation is a separate discourse by itself to which Mirza Ghulam Ahmed spent a lifetime of research and publications. But again the burden is on Muslims (of South Asia that you allude to) to use his work, only if they open up their minds as nowhere did Mirza Ghulam Ahmed claim to change the Laws of Quran:

    2:170. And when it is said to them (- the disbelievers), `Follow what Allâh has revealed.’ They say, `We would rather follow such things as we found our forefathers (doing and believing).’ (Would they do so) even though their forefathers could not refrain (from evil), nor they could achieve their goal.
    2:171. The case of (one that calls) those who refuse (to obey the commandments of God) is like the case of one who shouts to that (animal) who hears nothing, but a mere call and a cry (of a shepherd). (They are) deaf, dumb and blind, moreover they do not use their reason. [Nooruddin]
    But to get to your point, how will you define success.  In historical terms, Muhammad PBUH had the most daunting task that any reformer faced and succeeded at. To begin with, he evolved (by personal and divine help) to almost human perfection by forty years of training.  Thereafter, he initially proved to his people with example of Abraham PBUH to not to bow before physical statues. And intellectually it is not that difficult. His difficulties arose when he had to confront the vested economic and political interests behind such institutional statues. Such vested interests included trampled human rights, inequity, injustice, despicable immorality to name a few. Once the physical symbols crumbled, rest of the success followed to fill in the vacuum thus created, and his multi-faceted role of a perfect personal exemplar was for all to see and follow. He thus laid the ground work for future confrontations with well-entrenched and institutionalized ideologies. It was his followers and subsequent generations, who took Islam to next level by facing, at least initially in self-defense, the Christianity, Zoroastrianism and others.

    Mirza Sahib had a different challenge. He had to work within the confines of thirteen hundred years old (and decayed) Islam and its (physically, morally, politically, financially etc.) enslaved populace. And then to have the nerve to intellectually challenge the institution of Christianity while at its peak and cut its very root by questioning its fundamentals i.e. the Bible and god head of Jesus and ultimately proving his death. At least Muhammad PBUH did not have to read Bible or any other distorted scripture 🙂 By all this I am not magnifying Mirza Ghulam Ahmed or minimizing Muhammad PBUH, for the simple reason that Mirza Sahib did not add anything to what Muhammad stood for, but rather followed his footsteps and tried to expound on teachings of Muhammad PBUH.

    Social and intellectual change is a multi-generational process. Newton’s laws had no immediate applied value to human condition in his lifetime. Similarly the fundamental truths take time to their full fruition. Christian mythology is a billion-strong ship that will take time to change its course and per Mirza Ghulam Ahmed’s mission its crumble is happening. It is my personal belief that the West will be an outstanding Muslim nation, which will make one forget the “traditional” Muslim world, because then they will be The Muslim World.

    I am sure that you must have visited the site and browsed various research books and media on it. No intellectually serious person whether Muslim or Christian takes Jesus of the Bible viably anymore. All such credit goes to Mirza Ghulam Ahmed’s lifetime of work. He not only wrote Jesus in India but went further by stating “Establishing the Death of Prophet Jesus is not Enough [Spiritual Reform is what is Needed]:

    But at the same time, I have not lost hope with Islam of the East, where we are seeing the beginnings of challenges to its dogmas. These challenges are inline with work of Mirza Ghulam Ahmed. This is a topic unto itself for another time.

  8. I guess that it is arguable that HMGA’s mission continues through others….I agree that could be an argument. 

    After reading the authentic hadith I conclude that the messiah was supposed to be a monumental figure, I think he was supposed to be buried in Mecca, there are many other things that the messiah was supposed to do. 

    HMGA did not fulfill the Islamic impression of the messiah.  An argument can be made that the muslims copied the christian theory of the return of christ.  This impression was given by the HP himself. 

    These are my research results.

  9. There are Muslims whom believe you are supposed to slay those that commit blasphemy.

    There are Muslims today whom believe you are supposed to slay those that apostatize from their faith.

    There are Muslims today whom believe you are supposed to slay/stone those that commit adultery.

    There are Muslims today whom would maintain that the pre-Islamic practice of concubinage is a part of Islam, and would maintain that sexual relations is not to be prohibited with female prisoners of war.

    These being the same Muslims whom also believe that is morally right for Islam to advance by force (“Islam, Jizyah, or the Sword!”)

    All of which of course which runs contrary to the teachings of the Qur’an, yet maintained by certain sections of Muslims, thinking this is the impression of Islam given by the Holy Prophet, but who in actuality only perpetuate the myth of Islam being unholy and inherently violent!

    It is of interest to note that death sentences for adultery, blasphemy, apostasy are prescribed in the Hebrew Bible, the Jewish scripture. (See for instance, Deut 13:6-10, Deuteronomy 22:22. Leviticus 24:16).  Concubinage is justified in Deut 21:10-14. Unconditional warfare is spoken of in Ezekial 9:5-6, 1Samuel 15:3)

    The point is, Muslims have made void the teachings of the Qur’an, and given precedence to Tradition, the same Muslims that await a blood shedding Mahdi/Messiah to slay a fanciful monstrous one-eyed Dajjal! The same Muslims that bring Islam into ridicule, so much so they slander their own Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) by accepting great untruths about his life. Of Moses (the prophet whom the Prophet Muhammad bears the greatest spiritual resemblance to) was also heavily maligned.

    And when Moses said to his people: O my people, why do you malign me, when you know that I am Allah’s messenger to you? But when they deviated, Allah made their hearts deviate. And Allah guides not the transgressing people (Qur’an 61:5).

    O you who believe, be not like those who maligned Moses, but Allah cleared him of what they said. And he was worthy of regard with Allah (Qur’an 33:69)

    The Holy Prophet is reported to have said: “There will come upon my umma a time of great trial, and the people will have recourse to their ‘ulama, and lo! they will find them to be apes and swine.” (Kanz al-Ummal, vol. vii, p. 190), the same description of the Israelites whom transgressed the Law of Moses (see Quran 5:60, 2:65)

    Dr Israr Ahmad wrote:

    “The Holy Prophet Muhammad foretold that the same evils would arise among his followers as had arisen among the Israelites. He said: ‘If they, the Israelites, had crawled into the hole of a lizard, you will crawl into it too’. His words go so far that although one is hesitant to quote them, but they are the words of the Holy Prophet which I put before you. He said: ‘If there was a wretched man among the Israelites who committed incest with his own mother, then among you also shall arise such a wretched man’. The meaning is that all the evils, in terms of religion, doctrine, thought, knowledge and deeds, which came to prevail among the Israelites, shall also come to prevail among the Muslims. The text of the hadith is as follows: ‘All the things which happened to the Israelites shall also happen to my followers, just as one shoe matches the other shoe’. This is a most eloquent comparison. Look at a pair of shoes, and because the front parts of the two point in opposite directions, you see one shoe being apparently different from the other. But put the soles of the two shoes together, and they are identical. Similarly, the circumstances of the Israelites and the Muslims appear to be different, because after all, there is the distance of fourteen hundred years, and so there is some difference on the face of it. But if you look between the lines, you find that there is not a hair’s breadth of difference. And as to the condition of the Jews described in the Holy Quran, each one of us must look at himself to see whether he is not a victim of that condition.

    [Dr Israr Ahmad, writing in London edition of Jang for 19 October 1987, page 3. Quoted in Translator’s Notes in translation of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad’s book Shahadat-ul-Quran, p. 95]

    Lastly, in the words of Maulana Muhammad Ali:

    A little reflection would show that a Messiah was needed not only to carry the message of Islam to the followers of first Messiah, but also to reveal the spirit of Islam to the Muslims themselves who, as predicted by the Holy Prophet, are following in the footsteps of the Jews. Just as a Messiah was needed for the Jews when they wrangled about words, not caring for the spirit of a religion, a Messiah was needed for the Muslims when they adopted the same Jewish mentality. As the late Sayyid Mumtaz Ali says in one of his articles published after his death: “The Jews added the Talmud, Midrash, etc., to the Torah, and God sent the Messiah for their correction. It was probably in obedience to that Divine law that marhum and maghfur [may God have mercy on him and grant him protection] Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian claimed Messiahship in order to break off the Jewish mentality of the Muslims of this age.” (Tahzib-i Niswan, November 1938) []

    “To those people who harbour ill-feeling against the honoured Mujaddid, or who fail to give him the respect and love due to such a servant of the faith, I say: Has there ever been in the world a liar and imposter who filled the hearts of his followers with such an urge for the propagation of Islam, and to whom Almighty Allah gave so much help as to continue fulfilling his dreams and aspirations long after his death? In the beginning we did not have the longing that Islam should spread in the world. It was the yearning of the Imam of the age who set us on this work, and set us on it so firmly that the longing which was in his heart was disseminated to thousands of other hearts.” [Maulana Muhammad Ali on how he was influenced by Hazrat Mirza ,

  10. Minimal expectation from a religion is its uplift of man in all his aspects of life similar to one of the attributes of Allah – Rub ul All-amin, which alludes to His Lordship of all spheres e.g. material, moral, spiritual, social, economic, scientific, etc. etc.

    But the irony is that historically, a non-thinking man is inclined to justify his wishes and the unknowns of his world by a mental imagery which overtime gets distorted into a full-fledged mythology. We see it in almost all the religions of the world amongst which Christianity and Hinduism are quite prominent and it also has crept into Islam. On the reverse a secular mythology in the modern day is Disneyland. Disneyland can be a source of fun, pleasure and relaxation to the extent that one recognizes its mythical nature. The trouble starts when its audience starts believing in the actual flying elephants and talking lobsters…by extension virgin birth, infant talking in the crib, man walking on the water, healing lepers and blind by touch of hand, raising the dead and ultimately swooping up into heavens and sitting on the right hand of the God. Now that’s Fantasia!!! And that too invented two thousands years ago!! Wow! Sadly that’s what Muslims believe in as well. If this is the nature of one’s belief then what kind of uplift can one expect from such a religion?

    Out of such mythology emerges religious franchise, which for its vested economic and political interests monopolizes and restricts the free thought of its audience. In order to keep them mesmerized, there is constant refinement of myth, which becomes the sole representation and purpose of religion. A religion that by now is far too removed from its original truth. The details of such myriad mythology now can only be delved into by the hair splitting polemic authors i.e. its clergy. See for yourself if the following hair splitting parable fits clergy of any religion, including Islam:

    2:67. (Recall) when Moses said to his people for their own good, `Verily, Allâh commands you to slaughter a cow.’ They said, `Do you make a mockery of us?’ He said, `I seek refuge with Allâh from being (one) of the ignorant.’
    2:68. They said, `Pray for us to your Lord to make clear to us what (kind of a cow) it is.’ He replied, `Says He, “It indeed is a cow neither too old nor too young, (but) of middle age, in between.” Now do as you are commanded.’
    2:69. They said, `Pray for us to your Lord to make clear to us of what colour it is.’ He replied, `Says He, “It is a cow fawn of colour, is intensely rich in tone, very pleasing to the beholders.”‘
    2:70. They said, `Pray for us to your Lord to make clear to us what it (- the cow in question) is (definitely like); for (all such) cows are much alike to us, and we shall indeed, if Allâh will, be guided to the right goal.’
    2:71. He said, `He (- God) says, “It is indeed a cow neither broken in to plough the land nor to water the tillage, perfectly sound (without any blemish), no spot on her”, (she is of one colour).’ They said, `Now you have (after all) brought the exact truth (with the necessary description).’ So they slaughtered her, though they had no mind to do it. [Nooruddin]

    In a nutshell, Mirza Ghulam Ahmed demystified Islam of Allah, Quran and Muhammad. Thank you Mirza Sahib.

  11. Getting back to the topic of this thread “Religious militancy in Pakistan,” the Book admonishes Muslims to not be Judaic by frequent reference to parables of Moses to prevent deterioration of masses and the Message where ritual and outward behavior has precedence over reason and spirit. Where shell of a religion is preserved with a hollowed out soul. History is witness to pervasive religiosity of Pakistan of past many decades and even now of the present — especially the treatment meted out to the Muslims of minority point of view which includes Shias, Ahmadi’s etc.:

    2:84. And (recall) when We took a covenant from you, `You shall not shed each other’s blood and you shall not expel your people from your homes.’ Then you confirmed it (promising to abide by it) and you witnessed (the covenant).
    2:85. Yet, you are the very people who (violating the terms of the covenant) slay your own people and expel a section from among you from their homes, backing up one another against them sinfully and transgressingly. And if they come to you as captives (seeking your help), you ransom them, while their very expulsion was forbidden to you. Do you believe only in a part of the Script (- covenant) while a part you deny? What is the recompense of those among you (who act like that) except disgrace in this life? And on the Day of Resurrection they shall be given over to the severest chastisement. And Allâh is not at all unmindful as to what you do.

    5:13. So on account of their breaking their covenant We deprived them of Our blessings, and We let their hearts become hardened. Now they pervert the words from their proper context (of the Divine Book) and (in doing so) they have abandoned a good portion of what they were (reminded of and) exhorted with. And you will never cease to discover one dishonesty (or the other) on their part, with the exception of a few of them; so pardon them and pass (them) over. Verily, Allâh loves the doers of good to others
    5:14. We took the covenant of those (also) who say, `We are Christians;’ but they have abandoned a good portion of what they were (reminded of and) exhorted with. So We have kindled enmity and hatred between (various sects of) them till the Day of Resurrection. And Allâh will soon inform them of all their machination

    Wouldn’t it be thus appropriate to rename the topic at hand to “Judaic Militancy in Pakistan.” What a disgraced, hardened hearts and sect-ridden society that has been informed of all their consequence within a span of a few decades. Where am I wrong? You be the judge.