Dr Ismail Aby Jamal

Dr Ismail Aby Jamal
Born in Batu 10, Kg Lubok Bandan, Jementah, Segamat, Johor

Saturday, October 22, 2011

What’s the difference between Libyan Muslims that murdered pleading Muaamar Gaddafi and Malaysian Muslims that are always suspicious of each other? Same difference or no difference...!!

There are many misconceptions about Islam merely because the minority voice (which is shouting the loudest) is heard, while the other voices remain silent. Without sounding as if I am an ‘Islam Apologist’, maybe I should share with you the views of other Muslim scholars -- which is a far departure from the voices of those 4,000 people who participated in the ‘assembly of 1,000,000’ yesterday.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

If the foregoing discussion has any validity, then one has to infer that the concept of an Islamic state must be completely abandoned if sanity is to return to Muslim political discourse.
One should rather speak about a state for the Muslims, or an Islamic political community. One must also abandon the illusions about the millennium promised by the revival of a utopian polity in which a righteous and saintly ruler will miraculously emerge to restore the long lost golden age of Islam. Nor is it wise to shift our millennial hopes to the newly emerged Islamic movements, and expect that their accession to power will automatically bring an era of divine justice and saintly rule. There is simply no alternative to attaining these objectives the hard way, by doing what is needed to achieve them.
Wisdom dictates that we should be pessimistic about the qualities of our rulers, something which should not be too difficult, given our experiences. The institutions of a Muslim polity, and the rules devised to govern it, should therefore be based on expecting the worst.

Human experience shows that democracy, broadly defined, offers the best possible method of avoiding such disappointment in rulers, and affords a way of remedying the causes for such disappointments once they occur.

The value of this approach is that it does not make the attainment of dignity and freedom of Muslim individuals contingent on the setting-up of a utopian Islamic state which we may never live to see. It also removes the grounds on which the current tyrannies ruling the Muslim world are justified.

The tyrants lording it over the Muslims today, aided and abetted by their foreign allies, justify their existence by fear of Muslim `fanatics' who want to coerce others into adopting an unacceptable lifestyle. This lame excuse for tyranny must be removed by affirming our commitment to democracy as the governing principle of the Muslim polity in all its stages.

The state for Muslims must be a principle of liberation based on pluralism, with no coercion involved other than the minimum inherent in the principle of community itself. The raison d'etre of a political community is to assure the peaceful coexistence among its members.
A Muslim political community is therefore an institution required to ensure that Muslims live in peace and harmony with one another, with other communities within the territory ruled by their polity and with other nations and communities on our planet. This peaceful co-existence has to be based on the rules of equity and fairness, and must not force Muslims to live contrary to their principles.

The central misunderstanding of current Muslim political thought is the confused belief that a state based on Islamic principles is one which forces people to live according to Islam. In truth, the purpose of an Islamic political community is to enable individual Muslims to live according to Islam, and to protect them from coercion which tends to subvert their commitment to Islam.
All the current references to the `imposition of sharia' or the Islamic state, whether by Islamic thinkers or opponents of Islam, actually misunderstand the issue completely. Sharia can rule truly only when the community observing it perceives this as a liberating act, as the true fulfilment of the self and moral worth of the community and each individual within it, for sharia can never be imposed. When it is imposed, it is not sharia. When only coercion underpins sharia, it becomes hypocrisy.

A Muslim polity must also defend the right of Muslims to live freely according to the dictates of their consciences, by force if necessary, for a Muslim state must use all its resources to fight injustice and tyranny inside and around it. We cannot expect the commitment to peace to be a licence for the toleration of all evils in the name of avoiding conflict.

This was the central mistake of classical Muslim political theory, which has neither succeeded in avoiding conflict nor in achieving justice. Therefore, it is essential to strive for justice as the only firm basis for permanent peace and harmony.

To attain these goals, the Muslim state must rely primarily on the responsibility and active role of the individual within the community. It reasserts the value of the individual without preaching individualism. Classical Muslim political thought relegated the individual to the status of a non-entity by the postulation of vacuous and imprecise concepts such as that of ahl al-Hal wal Aqd and fard kifaya.

These confused notions provided the basis for the endorsement of practical secularism, or for making the legality of all Muslim social activity dependent on the will of a despot.
It must be reaffirmed that the individual does not need the state to be a Muslim. He creates the state as a Muslim, and he creates it voluntarily to further enhance his Islamic life. The opinion given by al-Ghazali and others about the necessity of the state - any state - as the precondition of the legality of Muslim social life is the opposite of the truth. A despotic and illegal regime does not bestow legitimacy on subsidiary actions. On the contrary, it marks everything it touches with the stamp of illegality. For Muslims, to have no state at all is better than to have an illegal one.
“Who Needs An Islamic State?” By Dr Abdelwahab El-Affendi

Comments (12)..

written by Saint, October 23, 2011 10:13:40

The current UMNOBN has placed Islam a separatist (Muslims against non Muslims) religion. Unless this perception is changed by PAS by humane universal qualities, many (including Muslims) will object to an Islamic state.

written by james 1067, October 23, 2011 10:06:29

Let God play the role of God and man play its part that is a sinful human. We are not perfect so who are we to be judge, jury and excutioneer of our human kind. Lets be humans first by sorting out the many problems which need our attention. we need seriously affordable houses,quality education,cheaper food and good healthcare where everybody can go to. We have failed even in this area yet we want to defend God. Converting people just for the number sake is not the answer for our religion. Wont help us when we stand before him. Whether we had respect for him and his laws and live the life that he was proud of even in our talk with people, our thoughts, the way we lived. Thats what draws people to God by the life we live. So lets let God be God and lets us be 1HUMAN, trying to solve the problems faced by our earthly bros and sisters. ...

written by hellosunshine, October 23, 2011 10:03:28

With Muslims like Harrussani, Hasan Ali, Katak Ibrahim, Mooheedin et al, Islam does not need enemies. They are doing a damn fine job of farking up the name of their faith big time...

written by earthman, October 23, 2011 09:35:59

RPK, I have always suspect that you are an Islamic apologist. I think you are. That is okay for I believed that not only we must have freedom of speech but also free to dream. Having said that, is not free to dream the same as faith? One that is intangible?

What the writer wrote is to see the fruits of the tree. But right now one can say or boast what one wants , but the fruits of Islam is not good but sorry to say - toxic and spreading out of control. Oppression, hatred, oppression, injustices, restrictions, threats, fear, corruptions, empty rantings ,insecurity, resistant to change , pride and stubbornness. One may object and say that its only a minority few, but the silent majority are silent and many have left Islam and continue to do so. That is why the Muslims hard cores would not allow apostasy to spread as seen today in Himpun and around the world. ..

written by KepalaAngin, October 23, 2011 09:05:05

Just take a look at all Islamic countries...any better than others....Race and Religion were use by this bastard politicians to fool people..we should do away with these craps for a better tommorow. ...

written by neilahmad, October 23, 2011 09:02:46

In other religion I seldom find religion is written on their faithful face but in Islam this religion is written all over the muslim face. WHY!

In Turkey, Lebanon I don't see such extreme muslims. Here in Malaysia majority belittle the minorities, drag cow heads on the streets,burn Christians churches, incite violences,steal the nation's coffer,call the chinese prostitute the Indians beggar, throw innocent from buildings, custodial killings,gov't top officials conspiring with thugs and crooks ,bonking colleagues and especially this..screwing Altantuya and C4 her.

I don't mind islamic states but it must be a state that abides by the rules of law, respect one another and enact policies that is fair to all, not just for one race.

What a crap nation is this.. oh, not the nation fault but those walking in the corridors of power. ...

written by AlwaysFair, October 23, 2011 08:58:09

Will PAS give up the idea of Islamic State for the sake of all Malaysians?

Or will they cling on to it to the detriment of all 27 m Malaysians including themselves? ...

written by richfyf2000, October 23, 2011 08:54:08

written by Tompios, October 23, 2011 07:26:29

"Am looking for the day where either UMNO or PAS have some non-Islam who hold very important post in their party. Can it be?" Notice that Thailand do have Muslim Politician. Reason being they are not a religious political party ...

written by AlwaysFair, October 23, 2011 08:39:48

How can you have Islamic State when there is huge minority of non-muslims.

The developed countries that have laws and constitutions to govern them are the best democracies.

An Islamic state is dangerous because if the ruling party is corrupt and tyranical then they can use Allah's name to silence critics and dissent and who dare to question Allah? The path to hell is paved with good intentions.

PAS better get their act right or they will sabotage the political awakening. ..

written by jig, October 23, 2011 08:06:45

I had been a Buddhist, a Catholic and now a Christian. Your passage of Islamism overwhelms me. Not that I am about to convert to Islam, but here indeed I find a common thread that all religionists should use to enter into the eye of the needle.

In the same breath, politics can never replace God's one single principle to rule over humans. And politicians of the day will always paint a dirty picture, using religion in their rule, when their greed and lust for power is part of their political will. ..

written by sopi, October 23, 2011 07:30:16

Yes, when the majority of intelligent, rational Malay-Muslim brothers chose to remain silent, it will be rule of loud and boisterous minority who function on personal greed rather than high and noble principles. It's time for more sane and rational voices to be heard. ...

written by Tompios, October 23, 2011 07:26:29

This is what I looking for. Islamic ideology that focusing on humanity without looking who the people is. The late Saddam of Iraq was one of the big leaders in history. He could unite all religions, races and backgrounds during his tenure. Yes, he was very strict-demanding. Yes, but Iraq has turned to the fastest economic power in the world. I respect Saddam and really admire how he managed his country. As for me, he was one of the truest follower of Islamic faith. His once cabinet mixed with multi religions as part of administration. Yes, Tareq Aziz as the example; I believe he is Non-Muslim (Saddam's member party) who held very important ministerial during Saddam era.

Am looking for the day where either UMNO or PAS have some non-Islam who hold very important post in their party. Can it be?

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