Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Literalists Have Turned The Quran Into A Jail Manual

By Sumit Paul, New Age Islam 6 December 2022 The Quran -Maniac, Nay, Quran -Brandishing, Muslims Condescend And Judge Other Muslims And Call Them Heretics And Kafir If They Don't Believe In The Quran's Divinity, Authenticity And Veracity. ------ A few days ago, I was reading Yunus Emre (1238 CE-1328 CE), a great Turkish folk poet and Islamic Sufi mystic who wrote in old Anatolian Turkish. In one of his mystic poems, Emre wrote, " Should I remain stuck in Quranic Heaven and Hell, Hellfire, Olhaf'is (Turkish for Hereafter), Day of Judgement, among others or love my Lord without these unnecessary conditions and finally merge into Him? '' In other words, Emre was least bothered about Quranic diktats and impositions on those who love Allah. He says, " Let me love Allah every moment. Don't narrate to me the scriptural strictness." Elsewhere, he writes, " I'm not a Rila'az (Hafiz-e-Quran in old Turkish). I don't need to remember Quranic verses and even follow them. They're for the beginners. All I need is the purity of heart, sincerity of faith and piety of worship." So apt! Even after nearly a millennium, Emre's words carry the Truth. In fact, his words are all the more relevant in these times when literalists have turned their Quran into a jail manual. These literalists have given themselves the exclusive right to be the sole custodians and chosen knowers of Quran and Islam. The Quran -maniac, nay, Quran -brandishing, Muslims condescend and judge other Muslims and call them heretics and Kafir if they don't believe in the Quran's divinity, authenticity and veracity. Mansur-Al-Hallaj, famous for his ecstatic proclamation of An-al-Haq (I'm the Truth), never believed in esoteric and eschatological beliefs. He believed in Fana (Merging) and nothing else. Was he a less Muslim than today's literalists, who're no better than village mullahs and medieval thugs? The extraordinarily repetitive Koran often admonishes its followers and threatens them with eternal damnation or hellfire. Will any sage and sagacious mind take these roguish threats as god's words and edicts? The way the Quran has been compiled and culled, its Allah appears to be no better than the megalomaniac god of the Old Testament. Richard Dawkins writes in his book, ' The god Delusion ' that, " The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.” The way, you literalist Muslims follow your Quran in toto, no wonder, you too have relegated your Allah to the level of the god of the Old Testament. After all, what's your Quran? There's nothing new in it. It's a hotchpotch and disorderly gleaning from the earlier scriptures of Judaism and Christianity. There's no cherry-picking. Be at least a good Muslim if you cannot become a good human and refrain from getting into hair-splitting details of your holy book/s. Live peacefully and let others also live properly. You guys have already turned the world into hell. What more hellfire do you expect? ----- A regular columnist for New Age Islam, Sumit Paul is a researcher in comparative religions, with special reference to Islam. He has contributed articles to the world's premier publications in several languages including Persian. 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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