Showing posts with label state. Show all posts
Showing posts with label state. Show all posts

Friday, November 29, 2019

'Jihad' and World Politics


One of the most misunderstood and much maligned concepts in the world of religion today is the doctrine of ‘Jihad’ in Islam. Unlike any other matter of devotional piety in any religion, ‘Jihad’ brings around it images of a deadly cocktail of religion, identity politics and armed violence involving wily politicians, extremists and terrorists; generating genuine anxiety, confusion and fear among the people. Indeed, ‘Jihad’ has come to mean different things to different people in our times. 

In our deeply troubled world, where powerful nations set the rules of the global game, non-State actors are also increasingly becoming vital players. In States where turbulent political conditions exist, ‘Jihad’ is almost invariably associated with the call to arms and violence by certain Muslim-groups ostensibly working to protect the collective interests of the Muslim communities concerned. For many governments with separatist movements or insurgent groups in their territorial domain; ‘Jihad’ is nothing but an ideology of unbridled violence and mayhem championed by non-State actorsIn sharp contrast to this, the groups fighting States look upon ‘Jihad’ as the ideology of their political resistance against unjust regimes- the moral and ethical justification for their militant campaigns against governments that ‘oppress’ the people. Inspired by their own notions of injustice and agency; often seeking retribution for alleged past crimes of the State concerned or to induce change in State policies vis-a-vis certain matters; organized groups as well ‘lone wolfs’- including suicide bombers- perpetrate violent crimes, targeting symbols of State power. These attacks often indiscriminately impact civilians as well, leading to ‘collateral damage’- unnecessary suffering for common people caught up in such incidents.

For instance, the horrific 9/11 terror attacks in the United States of America at the beginning of this century- in the year 2001- directed at the symbols of American military and economic heft resulted also in the death of thousands of people going about their everyday lives. The terrorists who executed this most audacious attack claimed they were driven by the ideals of ‘Jihad’ in committing this mass murder. Those who waged this ‘war’ on America were seeking vengeance upon the country for its dreadful policies abroad- including military interventions that killed hundreds of thousands of innocent people, and even destroyed entire societies in the Muslim world. Despite the moral high-ground the parties in conflict- States and the terror groups- seek to assert for themselves, both State terrorism and non-State terrorism are problematic for their means and methods of warfare and also due to the profound consequences such violence has upon its innocent victims, common folks like us.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Islam and International Law


Religion, Law and State

In his Friday Sermon of 08 November 2019~ 10 Rabi’ul Awwal 1441 AH, Imam- Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam Hadhrat Khalifatullah Munir Ahmad Azim Saheb (atba) of Mauritius spoke about the significance of law in upholding the dignity of the individual as well as in sustaining the global order for the collective progress of human kind. Hadhrat Khalifatullah (atba) identifies the distinctive contribution of Islamic values to the development of International Law in this context. 

It is instructive to note that while modern international law was for long considered to be a product of Western, Christian civilization and generally traces its origins to the legal problems that emerged in the context of the European imperial conquests (of South America in the 16th century and Asia and Africa in the subsequent centuries); there is increasing recognition in the academic literature now regarding the  profound debt the discipline owes- in shaping the contours of the subject- to the seminal writings and juristic interpretations of Hazrat Imam Muhammad Al Shaybani (ra), the great disciple of the great Muhaddith Hazrat Imam Abu Hanifa (ra), almost eight centuries before European scholars like Hugo Grotius- the 'father' of international law- began to engage with, and write about, the discipline.   

International Law as it stands today may broadly be defined as an ensemble of normative rules and diplomatic practices that guide actor-expectations in the world of international relations. And the actors on the global scene include, besides the States, international organizations, a host of official governance networks; multinational corporations, indigenous communities and the civil society organizations campaigning on reforming the systems of global governance. Despite the dynamic nature of the actor-interactions as well as the development of global rules in specific areas; the foundational values of International Law remain the same: sovereign equality and peaceful co-existence of States; the sanctity of covenants and the bindingness of legal obligations; the obligation of the Parties to act in good faith; respect for the symbols and signs of sovereignty of States, including the privileges of ambassadors and State agents; respect for diversity of community traditions and practices, etc.  Hadhrat Saheb (atba) illustrates these points with reference to Qur'anic verses and Prophetic practices, as it is the task of the true believers in this era to shun hypocrisy and work to create a just world under Islam. 

Read the Friday Sermon Below: 

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Faith, Freedom and Public Order

"ISLAMIC STATE" spreads Terror

In the context of the besiegement by the ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) of some Muslim states by proclaiming a caliphate which has not been mandated neither by Allah, nor the truly pious people, both the Islamic and non-Islamic worlds now see themselves facing a real danger. 

After Al-Qaeda and other terrorist cells, the ISIS is doing havoc in Iraq and Syria and is trying by force and terror to make people succumb to their command. According to them, the first objective of the Ummah must be the seizure of secular power so as to be able to reign in supremacy. And so, without referring themselves specifically to the Holy Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh), these people spread terror in both Muslim and non-Muslim camps. 

The world is facing a real crisis. That is why in this century, the Caliph of Allah, the Reviver of Faith of this century has been raised by Allah to thwart the purpose of any other false caliphate which is just like a flame blazing and burning further the fragile state of Islam.

We are in a state of emergency. 

Muslims must refer themselves first of all to the Holy Quran and the Sunnah of our beloved prophet (pbuh). What these so-called Muslims and defenders of the Ummah are doing has nothing to do with the practice of the Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh). The latter (pbuh) had established the Quran first; long before he even gained political power. The teachings (of the Quran) were observed/ put into practice even if the political powers of the time opposed them. The Holy Prophet (pbuh) remains verily our only source of light. His ascension to political supremacy was primarily free of all injustice and coercion.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Human Rights and Justice Matters

Today (1st May), some countries in the world are celebrating International Workers’ Day, or Labour Day. Whether in France, or other major countries of the world, many, including Mauritius celebrate Labour Day to commemorate the working class, to give a just impetus to the injustices they had to suffer throughout the years. This is a holiday where the mass and the superpowers also must reflect on the human side of workers, regardless of their rank in the work industry and give them all the rights they deserve. Unfortunately, it is a sad fact that despite that the rights of workers and all people are recognized, but these rights are rarely taken into consideration.

Injustice today reigns in favour of the “strong”.

Injustice, despite the fact that it is considered one of the most repulsive characters of man, continues to make havoc in every corner of the world. We witness it in our daily lives. It is no longer seen as something bad but something good! People ignore its seriousness. The situation is completely reversed. Instead of making justice govern our decisions, our reasoning and our judgment, it is injustice that has the upper hand. Even stranger, man rejoices in his unjust act without considering the grievous consequences that await him.

The injustice towards others is something the Lord of the Worlds has categorically prohibited. He even forbade it on Himself. Injustice is a major sin and manifests itself in many forms. In the world of work, the injustice of bosses, entrepreneurs, businessmen towards their employees, their workers, their servants is not a secret. How many thousands of workers are poorly paid or denied their wages or their rights while their bosses lead a life of luxury, in extreme extravagance breaking the heart of these poor people! Similarly, we witness injustice in the legal field. When a man in power accuses a weak low-ranking person, the latter is quickly judged and undergoes his sentence without defence.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Divine Precepts on Political Order

Islam is a World Order; hence the conception of Islamic state is that of a World State, for God is the Sovereign of all:

“Command is for none but God.” (12: 41).

“His is the sovereignty of the Heavens and the Earth.” (57: 6).

“Blessed is He in Whose hands is the sovereignty and He over all things has power.” (67: 2).

The ideal of Islamic state (or an Islamic country), like I just mentioned, is righteous life as it further proved by the oft-repeated voice of the Quran, “Believe and act righteously” which forms its leading theme. And to achieve this ideal God says: “Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good, enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong.” (3: 105).

Righteous life is the life lived in strict conformity with divine laws. The Quran is the code of right conduct which equips man to establish the will of God on earth and to lead humanity to its noblest destiny. Righteous life cannot be achieved unless society is purged of evils and virtue prevails. Virtue consists in moral excellence and in conformity of life and conduct with the laws of God who alone knows what is really good. There is no specific form of government prescribed by the Quran and the Sunnah. It seems that no detailed blue prints for the form of government are given so that flexibility be retained as to the adoption of some form suited to the occasion except despotism, for the head of the Islamic State himself is subject to the dictates of Islamic laws.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Persecution of Ahmadis in Indonesia

The on-going campaign in Indonesia, to ban and persecute the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community underscores the challenges facing the nation in protecting human rights, forging a secular identity and strengthening the spirit of democracy and rule of law. It is worth recalling that freedom of belief is a fundamental human right, guaranteed by the Indonesian Constitution, and no citizen can be denied this right on the grounds of his or her beliefs. Any thinking citizen would agree that as a religious order, the Ahmadiyya has every right to preach and propagate all of its doctrines and beliefs. It is immaterial for a secular state whether the beliefs or ritual practices may or may not conform to the beliefs and practices of the other denominations in Islam.

The religio-political campaign obviously seeks to discredit the teachings of the Ahmadiyya community and to call attention to the "danger" faced from this intrinsically peaceful sect of Islam. Instead of displaying sectarian intolerance and moral bankruptcy, the orthodox leadership would do well to engage the Ahmadiyya Muslims in a theological, civilized, intellectual debate and thereby show a modicum of respect for the faith, intellect and convictions of ordinary Muslim citizens and others.

The sectarian politics of religious mobilization and its current manifestations will have divisive implications for the country's plural future. Clearly, banning the movement to prevent its spiritual appeal or declaring it a non-Muslim minority to stop its growth is not the business of a secular government. Leaders of the country and conscientious citizens would do well to reflect over the politically disastrous and socially divisive legacy of Pakistan's experiment with the criminalization of the Ahmadiyya sect. Social scientists and political analysts have, in recent times, traced the growth of Muslim extremism and cultural intolerance in Pakistan and elsewhere, to the divisive politics of anti-Ahmadiyya rhetoric.

At one level, what is at stake is the very notion of human rights and rule of law in a secular democracy. Extremists and right-wing Muslim orthodoxy should not be allowed to dictate the future of Indonesian identity. At another level, perhaps even more importantly, what is at stake for devout Muslims is the very meaning of being a Muslim in our times. After all, the Holy Qur’an explicitly states: "Let there be no compulsion in matters of faith." Islam's plural character and legacy of religious tolerance needs to be defended, ironically enough, against an "orthodoxy" that claims to represent it!

In an article published on The Hindu, one of India’s leading newspapers, on June 15, 2013, Pallavi Iyer has thrown searching light on the persecution of Ahmadis and other minority religious denominations and the growing signs of cultural intolerance in Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim country.  

Read the Article:

Over the last few years, Jakarta has laid down legal infrastructure that discriminates against religious minorities, allowing Islamists to take the law into their own hands