Still Working for Allah in the West: Theory and Methodology
Some Frank Questions and the Shadow of September 11
Here are some frank questions I want us to direct at those of us who hold rejectionist views and attitudes and tend to call elections Haram. Neither by the content of these questions nor by their tone do I mean the slightest disrespect to anyone.
Such spiritedness as my language may betray is an indication of my deep engagement with the issue and not of resentment or hostility toward the holders of the opinions I question. I respect their right to have and express the opinions they do, no matter how much I may disagree with them.
Future historians and analysts will no doubt want to probe the extent to which September 11 and the subsequent war on terrorism may have become a fig leaf for a variety of political and religious agendas around the world such as the American religious right’s avowed distaste for Islam; America’s own globalist and neo-imperialist ambitions; and American government’s servicing of the goals of Israeli land grab and ethnic cleansing in occupied Palestinian territories.
I am grateful that we all live in societies – in what I call the Golden Triangle of Islam in the West – where it is acceptable for people to hold and express unpopular views. And where at least until September 11, 2001, having and expressing such views incurred no serious legal, social, professional and personal costs and penalties.
September 11 has changed everything. It has given us a new world. New standards, policies and procedures are continually being evolved and debated on either side of the Atlantic that have already produced a chilling effect on Muslim thinking and spirit.
But my thinking in asking these questions is not a product of the bloody events of September 11 or its bloodier aftermath. This thinking, as I indicated earlier, goes back decades and, in spite of my denials, it has its roots in my understanding of the Qur’an and Hadith.
So here it goes. Question number one.
ELECTIONS AND THE DOLLAR BILL
1. Have you a dollar or pound bill in your wallet or pocket – or lying around somewhere in your house or apartment?
Now, what is that little Kafir gadget doing in the pocket of a nice super-Muslim like you? Would it be fair to say that it is to some degree our view of ourselves as slightly better than some others that gives that little added sting to our opinion of others and what they do? And what could be more effective in giving us that added degree of self-righteous smugness than to do it in the name of God and Islam?
Did you realize that its presence in your perfectly, I presume, Islamic pocket or wallet or house or apartment may make you an accomplice in the Kafir electoral democratic processes of Western societies and governments?
By the way, did it occur to you that your wallet may have been made by some lower-grade Kafirs in Taiwan or Hong Kong? Or that the house or apartment you occupy in U.K., Europe or U.S. may have been constructed by a band of Kafirs according to the law of the land that has its roots in elections?
Yes, without jumping out to find convenient quotations from Qur’an and Hadith, I am willing to discuss at considerable length how the American dollar bill or the British pound in your pocket is the tip of an iceberg that is the election-based Western liberal democratic system of government that envelops every moment of your existence.
You may not realize this but this dollar or pound bill is a legal document – tender – you are carrying in your pocket. That stuff is dynamite – to the purity of your professions and disclaimers of any connection to or participation in this what I presume you are claiming is an un-Islamic electoral system of government.
Let us continue. I want to nail this thing if I can, Inshallah, once and for all. So that the innocent, honest and eager Muslim children of the Western Wing of the Muslim Ummah will not be misled by ill-formed ideas and unsound reasoning in the name of Islam – now or in future.
DRIVING LICENSES AND ELECTIONS
2. By any chance, do you also happen to have a driving license?
Now, that clearly puts you beyond the pale, doesn’t it? Just consider how far you have gone to work hand in glove with the Kafir system – from production of cars to construction of roads to passing of traffic legislation to licensing of drivers to imposing of insurance requirements.
I could fill any number of pages listing how the Kafir government system – elections and all – is involved in every little aspect of you getting your own little Islamic license, to drive your own little Islamic car – I take it that would be a car made in some Muslim country by people claiming to be Muslims, wouldn’t it, except that in the real world such cars still await their birth – on your own little Islamic roads following your own little Islamic rules of driving.
You realize, of course, I am using the expressions Kafir and Islamic somewhat sarcastically, with great pain and reluctance? This thing is so silly and so self-defeating and so damaging to the future of Islam and Muslims in the West – and so contrary to common sense – that it hurts to even talk about it.
Things of this kind almost seem like an effort to turn Islam into a cult rather than allow its natural light to shine forth in this world as the universal human system that Allah made it. That is why I say that I do not want to drag the Qur’an and Hadith into this. It trivializes the Qur’an and Hadith, Ma’adhallah!
Sometimes, Qur’an and Hadith become the last refuge of people who can’t think straight and who have bid goodbye to commonsense, whereas commonsense – Ma’ruf – is the prized possession of the Muslim in the long and often difficult journey called life.
Common sense, science, logic, research, theory, evidence, analysis, reading, the book and the pen– and then finally Hadith, Qur’an and guidance from Allah; Haqq; Allah’s Nur – these are the Muslims’ tools of trade in this world.
Wa Ma Yaddhakkaru Illa Ulul Albab! And, Innama Yakhshallaha Min Ibadihil Ulamaa. That means Islam is not for fools and ignoramuses.
Let us take some more questions.