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Thursday, 19 June 2014


Nizar Commits A Sin By Asking:
"Would You Permit Me?"

A Poem Addressed To
The ‘Traders of Religion’
Responsible For Hatred
And Sectarian Violence

(By: M. Javed Naseem)

“Would you permit me to teach my children
That religion is the path to God,
And not to religious leaders or “scholars?”

“Would you permit me to teach my little ones
That religion is about good manners,
Good behavior, good conduct, honesty and truthfulness,
Before I teach them with which foot to enter the bathroom
Or with which hand to eat?”

Would you also permit me to say that so-called ‘Traders of Islam’ (the Middlemen) have distorted the face of the Deen prescribed by Allah for the One Ummah in the Holy Quran. These traders (in Urdu: ‘Thekedars’) promote and preach their own brand of Islam, thus creating ‘Fitnah’ of disunity, disruption, infighting and fragmentation among the Muslim Ummah. That’s contrary to the command of Allah in the Quran that says: “And hold on fast all together unto the Rope of Allah, and don’t be divided!”

وَٱعْتَصِمُواْ بِحَبْلِ ٱللَّهِ جَمِيعاً وَلاَ تَفَرَّقُواْ وَٱذْكُرُواْ نِعْمَةَ ٱللَّهِ
عَلَيْكُمْ إِذْ كُنْتُمْ أَعْدَآءً فَأَلَّفَ بَيْنَ قُلُوبِكُمْ فَأَصْبَحْتُمْ بِنِعْمَتِهِ
إِخْوَاناً وَكُنْتُمْ عَلَىٰ شَفَا حُفْرَةٍ مِّنَ ٱلنَّارِ فَأَنقَذَكُمْ مِّنْهَا
كَذٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ ٱللَّهُ لَكُمْ آيَاتِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ
“And hold fast, all together, by the rope which Allah
(stretches out for you), and be not divided among
yourselves; and remember with gratitude Allah's favor
on you; for you were enemies and He joined your
hearts in love, so that by His Grace, you became
brethren; and you were on the brink of the pit of Fire,
and He saved you from it. Thus does Allah make
His Signs clear to you, that you may be guided.”
(al-Quran 3:103)
The so-called Muslim rulers (Emirs and Kings, even Presidents) rule the Muslim Ummah in their countries by force, trampling their basic rights, violating the international laws on free-speech, and denying them human freedom. In the Middle East, there are only dictators visible who have their own interpretation of Islam; their own agenda and their own plan to stay in power till death. And then after their death, their children take over. Any opposition is crushed and silenced by all means.

There are, of course, limits to everything, even human rights, but there’s the base line – the minimum basic human rights or freedoms. These limits are introduced to guarantee equal rights among humans and keep peace and social justice in society.

Remember one thing! During the times of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) there were non-Muslims (Jews, Christians and Pagans) living in the same town/country and none of them was killed because of his faith. Only those non-Muslims were killed who waged a war against Muslims and attacked Muslim communities. They were killed in retaliation and self-defense. Those who lived peacefully along with Muslims, nobody ever (EVER) interfered with their religious freedom. Islam was not forced upon them.

Today, one sect tries to force others to accept their brand of Islam (or religion) otherwise they start burning the mosques, temples or places of worship of those who differ. That’s against the teachings of Islam. Everyone has to carry his/her own load/burden. Everybody is answerable to God for his/her belief or faith.

There is no compulsion. Allah makes it very clear in the Quran:
لاَ إِكْرَاهَ فِى ٱلدِّينِ قَد تَّبَيَّنَ ٱلرُّشْدُ مِنَ ٱلْغَىِّ فَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ
بِٱلطَّاغُوتِ وَيْؤْمِن بِٱللَّهِ فَقَدِ ٱسْتَمْسَكَ بِٱلْعُرْوَةِ ٱلْوُثْقَىٰ
لاَ ٱنفِصَامَ لَهَا وَٱللَّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ
“Let there be no compulsion in religion!
Truth stands out clear from Error.
Whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah
has grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold,
that never breaks. And Allah hears
and knows all things.”
(al-Quran 2: 256)

Then who are we to kill or hurt those, and burn their houses/shops, who disagree with us and don’t accept our brand of religion? Let them believe what they want to believe! They will know at the end. Leave them alone as long as they don’t attack you to kill you or damage your property! Islam means peace!

In a world today where thinkers are assassinated, writers are considered infidels and books are burnt, where societies refuse each other, factions claim legitimacy, sectarianism is promoted and defended; and Authority forces silence on the mouths of speakers; where independent thinking is forbidden; where questioning is a sin, Nizar Qabbani, a Syrian poet-philosopher commits a sin by writing a poem: "Would You Permit Me?" We may not 100% agree with what he says and demands, but he speaks the truth and shares his pains and grievances with the rest of the world. See, if it touches your heart and makes you raise your voice for your rights to get rid of the middlemen, the ‘Traders (‘Thekedars’) of Islam’. Here’s the poem:

(Nizar Tawfiq Qabbani, a contemporary Arab (Syrian) poet, philosopher, thinker, diplomat. (Born: 21/3/1923 in Damascus, Syria. Died: 30/4/1998 in London, UK).

Would You Permit Me?

Would you permit me bring up my children as I want,
and not dictate their whims and orders.

Would you permit me to teach my children
that religion is the path to God,
and not to religious leaders or “scholars”?

Would you permit me to teach my little ones
that religion is about good manners,
good behavior, good conduct, honesty and truthfulness,
before I teach them with which foot to enter the bathroom
or with which hand to eat?

Would you permit me to teach my daughter
that God is about love, and she can dialogue with Him
and ask Him anything she wants,
far away from the teachings of any individual
who is only God’s creation?

Would you permit me not to mention
the torture of the grave and thereafter to my children,
who have just come to this world
and do not know about death yet?

Would you permit me to teach my daughter
the tenets of the religion and its culture and manners,
before I force on her the 'Hijab' (the veil)?

Would you permit me to tell my young son
that hurting people and degrading them
because of their nationality, color or religion,
will be considered a big sin by God?

Would you permit me to tell my daughter
that revising her homework and paying attention to her learning
is considered by God as a prayer to him
and is more useful and important
than learning Ayahs from the Quran by heart
without knowing their meaning?

Would you permit me to teach my son
that following the footsteps of the Honorable Prophet
begins with being honest, loyal and truthful,
before growing his beard or donning a short robe (long shirt)?

Would you permit me to tell my daughter
that her dearest friend, who happens to be a Christian,
is not an infidel, and my daughter should not cry for her friend
now fearing that she will go to Hell?

Would you permit me to argue,
that God has not authorized anyone on earth after the Prophet
to speak in His name nor did He vest any powers in anyone
to issue 'deeds of forgiveness' to people?

Would you permit me to say,
that God has forbidden killing the human spirit
by killing human beings,
and who kills wrongly a human being
is as if he killed all humankind,
and no Muslim has the right to frighten another Muslim?

Would you permit me to teach my children
that God is more powerful, more just, and more merciful
than all the (religious) scholars on earth combined?
And that his standards are different from the standards
of those trading the religion,
and that his accountability is kinder and more merciful?


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