Quote-Unquote - Book VI (501-600)

Feb 12, 2014


Two Things Muslims Must do

Here are two things that are absolutely, positively required of all Muslims, so far as the Qur'an is concerned:

1. First of all, all Muslims -- men as well as women -- must learn to read the Qur'an, properly and correctly, in the original Arabic language and script.

There are no ifs or buts about it. This is what all Muslims -- men and women both -- are supposed to do.

It is part of the Universalization of Education for which Islam came into this world.

2. Second, all Muslims -- men as well as women -- must read the entire Qur'an, cover to cover, from the "Alif" of Alhamdulillah to the "Seen" of Minal Jinnati Wannaas, with translation in their own language, and with minimum notes and commentary from those same books.

Most translations of the Qur'an have notes and brief commentaries in the margins.

Muslims have no excuse for not doing these two things. 

Or for doing one and not doing the other.

This is also part of the same purpose of Universalization of Education for which Islam came into this world.

However, at the same time, Muslims must NO LONGER allow one fellow to take one Aayat of the Qur'an and hold forth for hours on what it means in the name of giving so-called Tafseer.

This is part of Deprofessionalzation and Declericization and Detheologization of Islam.

It is time for Muslims to put an end to this mostly priestly practice and deprofessionalize and declericise and detheologize Islam.

And return the Qur'an -- and Islam -- to ordinary Muslims to read and to understand.

All of which is part of the overall purpose of Democratization of Islamic societies, which is one of Islam's greatest contributions to human culture and civilization.

So, let us get on with it Muslims!


A Muslim's Life Is Love

How can a Muslim lose? For, for a Muslim, life is love.

A Muslim looks above – and loves God above. 

A Muslim looks below – and loves God whose creation he surveys as far as the eye can see.

A Muslim looks up and sees the sun, the moon, the planets, the stars – and the uncharted galaxies.

And a Muslim's heart fills with awe and admiration at the grandeur, majesty and the interminable flawlessness of the celestial world above.

And a Muslim's heart brims with God's love.

A Muslim looks down and sees the earth and its many shapes, forms, contours –and denizens, from humans to beasts, from the animals to plants, and from the living to the non-living.

And a Muslim's heart rejoices at what it sees and dances with the daffodils, as a poet once put it.

And then a Muslim's heart runs over with God's love.

And it rocks with the love of all things above and below. 

And it hums to the tune of all things that are of God's creation and design.

Ya Jibaalu Awwibee Ma’ahu Wattayir.

A Muslim does not adore or worship anything or anyone other than God. 

But a Muslim absolutely and unconditionally loves God – and loves all things that God designed and created.


Three Things Muslims Must Do

There are three imperatives in the life of Muslims. Three things that Muslims must do.

  1. Democratize Muslim societies around the world.
  2. Deprofessionalize and de-clericise Islam?
  3. Universalize education -- for both men and women?


Put Your Life Where Your Mouth Is

Muslims must learn to put their life where their mouth is.

Muslims say they are Muslims. And, of course, they are right in doing that -- in calling themselves Muslims.

Allah himself -- and or Allah's Friend Ibrahim, Alaihis Salam -- gave Muslims that name: Muslims.

But if Muslims are truly Muslim, should they not put their life where their mouth is?

Should they not be doing the following?

  1. Democratize Muslim societies around the world?
  2. Deprofessionalize and de-clericise Islam?
  3. Universalize education -- for both men and women?


Islam Came to Change Things

Islam came to change things. Not to follow everything that everyone else does.

At the same time, Islam retained and reinforced the things people were doing that were right. 

And that were good.

Islam changed and corrected those things that were not right. And that were not good.

The difference was careful thought and deliberation. 

And systematic analysis and study.

One worldly test Allah provided people to decide what was right or wrong, and what was good or bad, was how useful that thing was for people and their well-being in this world.

The Qur'an says:

Ammaa Maa Yanfa'un Naasa Fa-Yamkuthu Fil-Ard.


"That which benefits people, stays on earth."

How simple and yet how profound!


When Islam Comes Calling

If Islam is democracy, as it is.

If Islam is all about justice and freedom for all, as it is.

If Islam is about Empowerment of the People, as it is.

If Islam is about helping the poor and the needy, as it is.

If Islam is about giving voice to the voiceless, as it is,

And if Islam is about rooting out corruption from society, as it is.

Then those of you who are not keenly, and with bated breath, following the Lok Sabha -- Lower House -- elections of 2014 in India unfolding right before your eyes, and doing everything in your power to help the process, you are out fishing when Islam came calling.

There is no greater Carnival or Mardi Gras on earth than nearly 800,000,000 (eight hundred million) people standing in line in brute sun and pouring rain to exercise the most fundamental right that God Almighty gave to all human beings -- men as well as women:

The Right To Vote and The Right To Elect Their Own Leaders and Rulers!

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