the Message Continues ... 5/17
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Need for an Islamic Reformation
by Zia Rehman, Georgia
The need for an enlightened movement for reform in the Muslim world freeing it from the shackles of traditionalism and bringing it in line with modern conditions and progress is much more desirable today than ever before. Muslims, if they wish to survive, have to undertake extra-ordinary efforts to pull themselves out from their centuries old inertia, and develop their own industrial and scientific infra-structure to free themselves from dependence on western technology and products,
The causes of the failure of Islam lie not in the religion itself but in the character of the Muslims who have allowed themselves to be guided and taught by the ignorant mullahs and self-appointed guardians of Islam.
It is very difficult for succeeding generations of Muslims to break away from the misinterpretation and deeply orthodox views of Islam that their parents have imbibed in their minds. We cannot blame them, for they in turn are victims of their parent's outmoded ideas, who in turn have been victims of archaic views of the village mullahs. If some Muslims find your views on a liberal interpretation of Islam offensive, it is very much in character.
Saudi Arabia, the custodian of Islam's most holy places, has greatly failed us. The cult of Wahabism, perpetrated by the House of Saud, with its stringent interpretation of Islam, bordering on primitive and archaic thinking, has not only hampered progress, but also spawned what is now widely known as Islamic militancy.
If Islam today is viewed as a highly intolerant and regressive religion, it is because the intellectuals of the Islamic world have no access to the pulpits, from where ignorant mullahs with their biased views and half baked ideas on the philosophy behind the message of the Qur’an, harangue to the masses and incite hatred and aggression against other religions. Is this what Islam is all about?
To frustrate this dangerous trend, I appeal to the learned and enlightened Muslims to leave no stone unturned to counter-act the damage continued to be done by our mullahs.
Who has appointed them as rulers of our conscience in the first place? And if there be knowledgeable and progressive mullahs, I sure would like to see them raise their voice in defense of Islam as it should be understood. Muslims must awaken from their stupor and start living in the real and pragmatic world. Failing this, I'm afraid Islam has no future.
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