Thursday, December 1, 2022

Role Of Ulema In Fostering A Culture Of Interfaith Peace And Social Harmony

Ulema Should Form A Global Consensus On Burning Topics Main Points: 1. Terrorism needs to be defined universally. 2. Extremist religious views should be shunned. 3. Global initiative by ulema should be taken against terrorism. 4. A global Islamic curriculum for madrasas and Islamic institutes should be formulated. 5. Science studies should be prioritised. ----- By New Age Islam Staff Writer 1 December 2022 ----------------------------------------------------------------------- The Muslims Of The Modern World Live In An Age Of Science And Technology And In Order To Keep Pace With The Scientific Development, They Need To Development Among Them A Scientific Way Of Thought And Approach To The World And To Other Religions. And Ulema Should Act As A Catalyst In This Process. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- An Indonesian delegation accompanying Mohammad Mahfud is holding a day-long discussion with their Indian counterparts on various topics. ----- The conference on the "Role of Ulema in fostering a culture of Interfaith Peace and Social Harmony in India and Indonesia" held in New Delhi on 29th of November 2022 was a positive step towards fighting against radicalisation, religious extremism and terrorism that has affected the most part of the world including Indonesia and India. The dialogue between religious heads and representatives of different religions from both the countries will hopefully help curb and counter growing culture of violence in the name of spreading a particular religious ideology. The ulema of both countries carry on their shoulders the responsibility to form a consensus to curb and fight religious extremism and sectarianism among the Muslims of the world. Coincidentally, the Muslims of both the countries follow a moderate version of Islam because of their common cultural history. The Muslims of India and Indonesia have over the centuries learnt to live in a multicultural society and respect the religions of others. However, exclusivist and supremacist interpretations of Islamic texts by the Arab and Egyptian exegetes and scholars in the modern age influenced the Muslim mind and they accepted these interpretations as the true version of Islam. This religious philosophy believed in the use of force and violence for every problem facing the Muslim world, from local social and political problems to social, moral evils and sectarian differences. Prominent ulema and exegetes with vast fan following wrote books and articles and delivered lectures propagating and spreading extremist ideology. Such books and lectures gave birth to extremist and terrorist organisations in the Middle East and South Asia. These organisations wreaked havoc in the eastern as well as the western world causing bloodshed and damage to Islam's image as a religion of peace and equality. Vast literature justifying violence and bloodshed in the name of fighting evil and spreading religion exists in the Islamic world. In many cases, this literature encourages violence even against the Muslims of other sectarian denominations. The ulema trained and educated in Turkey and Egypt and working as imams and religious teachers in the Europe present the Ahl-e-Kitab ( the People of the Book) as the enemies of Islam collectively and the countries of Europe as Dar- al - Harb ( enemy country) though Muslims have been living there for generations and are entitled to all human rights including religious rights. Therefore, if the ulema are really serious in stemming the rot, they would have to do something more than engaging in dialogue with other ulema and religious heads of other religions. A global definition of terrorism needs to be formed and a collective denouncement of terrorist and extremist organisations should be made and a list of the designated terrorist organisations signed and declared by the global alliance of ulema should be circulated among Muslims of the world declaring their activities and ideology un- Islamic and asking the Muslims not to be associated with them. In African countries, Al Shabab, Boko Haram and other fringe organisations continually cause violence against sufi Muslims and Christians. They kidnap students and torture them for ransom. In Nigeria, these organisations enjoy the overt and covert support of local ulema and politicians. The entire Muslim intelligentsia remains silent on the incidents of violence, murder and bloodshed. This support comes from a lack of understanding of Islamic teachings and philosophy and from a lack of a universal definition of terrorism and extremism. Unless and until a universal definition of terrorism is reached at and a consensus among the ulema is reached on the terrorist organsiations, this violence will continue. After Al Qaida, the ISIS has emerged as a big threat not only to the world peace but also for the Muslim world. It caught the imagination of the Muslims with its slogan of caliphate. Many prominent ulema of Egypt and India hailed and glorified them as the true flag bearers of Islamic caliphate while they killed Muslims and non- Muslims alike, destroyed churches and graves of prophets and sufis. Muslim, Kurd and Christian women were kept captive as sex slaves by the so - called warriors. The ulema need to form a consensus on the issue of Khilafat because the ISIS succeeded to gain the acceptance of a section of ulema and scholars by selling them the dream of caliphate. The Quran does not prescribe a particular form of government. It insists only on good governance. The ISIS is still a threat and tries to attract the Muslim youth by espousing local issues of Muslims. The ulema need to create awareness among the Muslim youth about the dangers of falling into their trap. Such groups have also existed in the initial period of Islam and Hadhrat Ali fought a decisive battle against them. They are called Kharijites. Al Qaida, ISIS, Al Shabab, Boko Haram, Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba etc. are the Kharijites of the modern age. Why don 't ulema declare them kharijites? The Muslims of the Modern world live in an age of science and technology and in order to keep pace with the scientific developments, they need to develop among them a scientific way of thought and approach to the world and to other religions. And ulema should act as a catalyst in this process. 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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