Friday, November 25, 2022

The Ghazwa-e-Hind Claims Of Pakistani Jihadi Militants: Does Authentic Hadith Literature Enjoin Jihad Against India Just Before The Day Of Judgement - A Comprehensive Study (Concluding Part 2)

By Grace Mubashir, New Age Islam 25 November 2022 The Islamic State Founded By Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) Was Not An Absolute Islamic State, But The Totality Of The Islamic Community On Earth At That Time To Be Emulated By All ----- The Islamic State founded by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was not an absolute Islamic State, but the totality of the Islamic community on earth at that time to be emulated by all. Because at the time of the death of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), the Islamic community was not a global experience spread across all continents as it is today, but a limited population living only within the boundaries of the country that the late Prophet (PBUH) led. Islam is the vision presented by Allah, the creator of the universe, for all mankind until the last day. The Islamic society nurtured by the Prophet (PBUH) was responsible for transmitting it across centuries and continents. The secure existence of the Prophet's disciples as a community depended mainly on the security of the polity in which they lived. Because of this, the Muslim community did after the death of the Prophet (PBUH) whatever was required to be done for the security of a country according to the ethics of the world order that existed at that time, following the progress of the Arabian political system built by the Prophet (PBUH). Growing as an empire was the way of political prosperity then. The then world political environment dominated by the Roman Empire and the Persian Empire that tried to conquer each other and conquered small countries for convenience. If the Islamic community had tried to confine itself to being an Arabian phenomenon that could be swallowed up by Rome or Persia whenever they saw it fit. This would have ended not just an Islamic state, but Islam itself. It was the quest of history that the Islamic state should be safe from the imperialist threats outside Arabia as well as from the tribal threats inside Arabia. The accepted international policy of the day was 'surrender or be conquered'. It was not the international community of today, when the concept of nationalism, the League of Nations and the United Nations came in and fixed boundaries for nations and declared interference beyond the boundaries an international political crime. In that era, when there were only two possibilities: grow yourself into an empire by expanding your boundaries, or disappear in the expansionary process of some other empire. The second possibility had to be avoided at all costs as far as the Islamic State was concerned. The Prophet (PBUH) had not struggled to build an Islamic society only so it faded into history within a few decades of his death! Neither Rome, nor Persia, nor the Arabs themselves felt that the political unification achieved by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was strong enough to grow into an empire. It is still one of the most mysterious miracles of history that before Rome and Persia even had time to realize the power of Arabian innovation, the Muslim armies entered the borders of these two empires and marked a new empire on the map of the world. The Arabs, who had no experience of leading any world wars until then, shook the forts of Persia and Rome during the time of Caliph Umar and established a new great empire that included today's Iran, Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Palestine, and Egypt in addition to the Arabian Peninsula. In all these areas, Muslims began to live, Islamic instruction became active, and the local people embraced Islam en masse. The caliph and his colleagues were convinced that their military conquests were as much about Islam's mission to become a world religion as it was about the preservation of an existing Islamic society. Due to these religious dimensions, the Prophet (PBUH) had in many ways called it a great virtue to continue military operations for the survival and progress of the nation he founded. These motivations given by the Prophet (PBUH) were the real driving force behind the establishment of the Islamic Empire. The need for the Islamic army to focus outside of Arabia had been practically explained to the Islamic community by leading the Tabuk campaign towards Rome in the ninth year of Hijra. The Prophet (PBUH) left this world not only proclaiming the virtue of military advances but also prophesying that the Muslims would have victories that would amaze the world in the way of empire building. At a time when Madina did not even have the manpower or weapons to overcome the challenges raised by the polytheistic tribes within Arabia, the Prophet (PBUH) made many prophecies about the future, based on divine instructions from Allah, when the Islamic community would become the rulers of an empire. When the dawn of those prophecies came during the time of the righteous Caliphs, the truthfulness of the prophethood of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was also strongly underlined. Those who understand the context of the said prophecies can easily understand the vision of the 'India War' hadiths. It is well-known that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) told his companions that the glory days of the emperors of Persia and Rome were coming to an end and that soon Muslims would manage their treasuries. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was living in Madina when Persia was at the height of its glory under King Khusro. When Khusro died during the Prophet's lifetime and one of his daughters succeeded him as empress, the Prophet (PBUH) said: "That nation - the Persians - who have made a woman their leader is not going to win." In the fifth year of Hijra, the Prophet (PBUH) and his Companions laboriously dug a large trench around the city limits to protect the city from a large coalition army of various polytheistic Arab tribes that unexpectedly surrounded Madina. While digging this trench, the Prophet (PBUH) used an axe to remove a huge boulder that stood in the way and removed it with prayers. After cutting the rock, the Prophet (PBUH) said that Allah was showing him the Persian and Roman cities while he was cutting the rock. Then, upon the request of his companions, the Prophet (PBUH) prayed to Allah that those lands should be conquered by the Islamic army. The Persia of the hadiths is geographically the nations of today's Iran and Iraq. Rome is Byzantine Rome; mainly the vast land which was called 'Sham' in Arabic at that time - included the countries of today's Syria, Jordan, Palestine and Egypt. How pitiful is the historical knowledge and world knowledge of someone who presents prophetic statements about the impending collapse of Rome and Persia or Arab Islamic military conquests there as 'evidence' to establish that Muslims have religious enmity with Iran, Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Palestine, and Egypt, or that Muslims regard the destruction of said countries as virtuous! None of these mentioned nations existed in the time of the Prophet (PBUH). The Rome mentioned by the Prophet (PBUH) had no political entity like Persia exists today. Not only Rome and Persia, but also the Islamic Empire that the Prophet (PBUH) said would lead these wars no longer exists. The age of empires has faded into history and we have entered a new world order of nation states. These hadiths from the Prophet (PBUH) are about a period that has become history today. The Prophet (PBUH) predicted that the Islamic kingdom founded by the Prophet (PBUH) in the Middle Ages, when the political grammar of the world was imperialism, would grow into an empire according to the natural state ethics of that time after his death, and overthrow the Roman and Persian empires that were hostile to Islam and Muslims. All those prophecies were fulfilled during the time of Caliph Umar (RA) with immense accuracy. That's where the issue ends. All the provinces of these empires where the Prophet (PBUH) told the Muslims that they would fight were enemy countries that did not have the presence of Muslim communities at that time and were eager to destroy the Islamic Empire. With the prophesied military advances of the Prophet (PBUH), they all entered a new historical phase with the presence of large Islamic societies. If anyone seriously thinks that the message of these hadiths is to fight the current Iran, Iraq, Syria, Palestine, Jordan and Egypt, then they have only misread those hadiths. They have not mastered the narrative language of the time in which they were spoken, they have not known that their prophecies have been fulfilled in history, their enmities are irrelevant today, and they have not noticed that the time to which their political logic applies is over. A hadith from Thawban (RA) shows that the Prophet (PBUH) mentioned India as a land that touched the military expansion of the Islamic empire, like Rome and Persia. India is translated from the Arabic word 'Al Hind'. Al Hind in Arabic at the time of the Prophet (PBUH) is not India, which came into existence on August 15, 1947, which is our motherland. Sindhu and Hindu were mostly heard of by the Arabs and as an abstract concept that extended to the eastern 'edge' of the world, as they understood, encompassing parts of present-day Malaysia and Indonesia in addition to the Indian subcontinent. In terms of present-day nation-states, Al Hind in medieval Arabic is a signifier that includes Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, and Indonesia. As soon as this becomes clear, the call for Jihad in India would be no longer valid; but against the teachings of Prophet himself. Because ‘India War’ Hadiths are about Sindh/Hind War Hadiths. From them anti-Pakistan, anti-Bangladesh, anti-Malaysian and anti-Indonesian wars can be determined by the same criteria as anti-India. In the accounts of the global spread of Islam, Arabia was a little more distant than Persia and Rome but inhabited by many warlike kings and uninitiated peoples. As in the case of Persia and Rome, that phase has passed in medieval Islamic history. The hadith sheds light on those occasions when early Islamic military advances reached the 'Hind' provinces. It has nothing to do with the modern Indian nation or the modern Muslims in India. In medieval Arabic, the expression 'Al Hind' was sometimes extended to 'Sind wal Hind'. It was a term used to refer to the vast tracts of land denoted by 'Al Hind' as Sind to the west of the Indus and Hind to the east of the Indus. The Hadith has nothing to do with Hinduism and never in literature Hinduism has been mentioned as enemies of Islam. The Hind in Arabic literature is used to show the geographical extension. To employ the Hadith to present social and political condition is malicious and against Islam itself. Based upon the Hadith, the call for Jihad is erroneous and to be confronted both intellectually and physically. Likewise, Islamophobes fear mongering using these Hadiths must be countered to facilitate mutual cohabitation peacefully. Eastward military movements reached Sindh and then crossed the Indus to the other side during the golden days when the capital of the Islamic Empire shifted from Madina to Damascus and imperial growth accelerated brilliantly under the Umayyad Caliphate based there. This was during the caliphate of Walid ibn Abdul Malik ibn Marwan (reigned 705-715 CE). In Iraq, which had already become part of the Islamic Empire, Walid's governor at that time was the famous Hajjaj Ibn Yusuf. As the officer in charge of the eastern provinces of the empire, he directed further eastward campaigns aimed at Hind. As far as the cradle of Sindh province, during the first Umayyad caliph Muawiya (died AD 680) the Islamic Empire had already expanded. The army commanded by Muawiya (RA) led by Sinan Ibn Salama expanded the empire to the Makran province on the coast of the Indian Ocean near Sindh. During Walid's reign, the famous Sindh and Hind campaigns were accompanied by the expansion of the empire when the Islamic army led by Qutaybat ibn Muslim made significant moves towards Central Asia near China under the instructions of Hajjaj ibn Yusuf. If Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) had prophesied about a 'Ghazwatul Hindi' and its virtue, the dawn of that prophecy would have occurred in parts of present-day Pakistan within decades of the prophecies about Rome and Persia. As is well known Hazrat Abu Huraira (603–681 CE) who had related this Hadith was hoping to participate in Ghazwa-e-Hind during his lifetime and had talked about what would happen if he comes back alive or is martyred in this battle. The hypocrisy, and indeed chutzpa, of linking a story about an event some 1300 years ago when some of the soldiers of the then Islamic nation fought against some kings and soldiers of a region now part of Pakistan, with a completely new state called India and its Muslim citizens that came into existence on August 15, 1947, would be obvious to anyone with even a modicum of intellectual integrity. Those who understand that the victories of Persia and Rome mentioned in the hadiths were achieved long ago by the Islamic community and that its interest is not to win victory by fighting with today's Iraq, Iran, Syria, Palestine or Egypt, all those who understand that the battle of the hadith regarding the Indian war is no different, if they read the history of Muhammad bin Qasim. Just as the Prophet (PBUH) spoke of Rome and Persia as completely non-Muslim countries, and the military advances of the Prophet (PBUH) that fulfilled his prophecy changed the course of those countries, it is also relevant that North India, which had no Muslims when the Prophet (PBUH) spoke, became the centre of many medieval Muslim regimes and millions of Muslims after Muhammad bin Qasim’s invasion. After the decline of the power of the Abbasid Caliphate, it was the India of the Delhi Sultans, Mughals and Nizams that remained the pre-eminent political seat of the Islamic world. Even today, India remains the second largest Muslim population in the world. Like Rome and Persia, India is one of the regions that were opened to Islam and Muslims through the military advances of Muslim rulers and changed Islamic history in the descriptions of all the early Islamic historians. The famous Tariq of Imam Tabri (d. CE 923) mentions the victory of Islam in Al Hind. Yaqubi (d. CE 897/8) speaks specifically about the military campaign of Muhammad ibn Qasim. Baladuri (d. CE 892), in Futuhul Buldan (Victory in the Lands), a work on the conquests of Islam in various lands, Muhammad ibn Qasim gives a detailed account of the conquests in India. Ibn al-Atheer (died c. AD 1160) quotes Baladuri in detail to tell the story of India's arrival at the level of Muslim settlement. In the provinces of the Indian subcontinent Muhammad bin Qasim conquered, the families of many of the Arab Muslim soldiers who came with him lived for generations. A book later compiled by some of them in Arabic, based on the war memories of their forefathers, was translated into Persian in the 13th century as Chach Nama, which is extant still today. The Chach Nama has special relevance as a text composed in India itself, reading India as an important chapter in the early Islamic conquests. Hafiz Ibn Kathir's famous Al Bidayat is an example of this. Under the heading 'Al Iqbaru an Ghazwatil Hind' (Chronicles of the Battle of the Hind), after quoting hadiths relating to the Indian War, Ibn Kathir points to the fact that Muslims had fought wars in India as an explanation for them. Clearly, if at all the Prophet predicted a Ghazwa-eHind, it was fulfilled with Muhammad bin Qasim’s invasion. There are some Muslim scholars and eschatologists who are of the opinion that the 'War against India' mentioned by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is not a past event in history but is to happen just before the Day of Judgment. The fact that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) mentioned the Muslims who will be in the army of Isa ibn Maryam (Jesus Christ) along with Ghazwat al-Hind in the hadith and preached the same reward to both groups may make some of them think so, if they consider those Ahadith authentic. Both Muslim and Christian eschatologists believe that Prophet Jesus (PBUH) will return to earth before the Day of Judgement. It has become a popular Muslim and Christian belief too. It is clear from the hadiths that this is when the end of the world is approaching. But the fact that two military movements are mentioned together in the same statement, so as to say that the members of both have the same reward, does not prove that both were to occur at the same time. If the Prophet (PBUH) had said that "those who return after the war of India will meet Easa ibn Maryam and his group", it would surely be certain that Ghazwatul Hind was to happen in the future before the Doomsday. But we mentioned above that the narrations which are seen to have been said by the Prophet (PBUH) are weak and unacceptable as authentic. We know that there were hundreds of thousands of concocted ahadith. As a result of this, the authenticity of every Hadith becomes doubtful, no matter what the Muhaddithin may say. Therefore, the contention that the text of the hadith indicates that the Ghazwatul Hind is future event, unlike the Roman/Persian wars, does not seem to have any merit. Another thing that is pointed out is that some early Muslim scholarly accounts have 'Ghazwatul Hind' as a sign of the Last Day. There is an important fact to consider here. We do not know how many centuries there are between Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and the end of the world, because Allah did not inform anyone. No Muslim scholar naturally possesses this knowledge, which even the Prophet did not have. The very appointment of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is counted as a sign of the Last Day in Islamic tradition. The Holy Prophet has mentioned that he and the Last Day are as close as the index finger and the middle finger. To say that the prophethood has ended means that the world is very close to its end. But nobody knows how much is meant by this 'more. We are living in a world where one and a half millennium has passed since the death of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). The early Muslim scholars naturally did not know that the world would go on without end for so long; It's like we don't know how much longer the world will last. Since the end of the world can happen at any time, scholars have understood that every prophecy after Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is a sign of the end of the world, and a sign that we are getting closer to the end of the world. The victories of the Muslims in Rome and Persia were, naturally, signs of the last days. Similarly, Muhammad Bin Qasim's arrival in India can be understood as an event related to the end of the world. This is only to point out here that the Hadith or the interpretations of the Hadith do not prove that the 'War against India' is a future event for us, to happen in the days immediately before the Last Day, as claimed by some sections. But it is not that there is no possibility of such an opinion being correct. There are scholars who are of the opinion that the war of the Muslims with the Romans, apart from what happened during the time of the Companions, will happen again very close to the Last Day, in connection with the return of Prophet Isa, and this has been pointed out in some hadiths. The view that 'Ghazwatul Hind' is one of a series of such wars near the end of the world is a scholarly opinion that may be right or wrong, as with scholarly, eschatological opinion on all subjects without clear evidence that can be accepted as authentic. But clearly these Hadith are not in reference to present political social conditions in Indian subcontinent. Muslim eschatologists believe that it is clear from the hadiths in (Kitab Al-Fitan Wa Al-Malahim) that the present world or political situation will not exist at the time of doomsday that the Muslim world would be plunged into civil wars and that eventually the entire Muslim community would unite politically under one leader to end them and his Islamic army, who would be known as the Imam Mahdi, would fight the enemies of the Muslim world. At a time when the world rule of Imam Mahdi and Ibn Maryam comes into existence, what do the radical elements think that the political conflicts that take place at a time when today's maps are only historical pages have anything to do with the current Indian situation? Even if the assumption of the scholars who believe that 'Ghazwatul Hind' is a future event to take place during or just before the return of Prophet Jesus (PBUH) is correct, such arguments have no place in current realities of the nation. Muslims would do well to get out of fanciful eschatological beliefs and start living in the contemporary 21st century world. Part One of the Article: The Ghazwa-e-Hind Claims Of Pakistani Jihadi Militants: Does Authentic Hadith Literature Actually Enjoin Jihad Against India - A Comprehensive Study (Part 1) ----- A regular columnist for, Mubashir V.P is a PhD scholar in Islamic Studies at Jamia Millia Islamia and freelance journalist. URL: New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

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