Since the birth of Israel under the auspices of the Western Powers notably the British colonial Power in 1948, carving it from the land of Palestine there has been no respite in the Muslim camps of the world. Almost 50 years in the dénouement the roller coaster ride of the Muslim discontent has been magnified from time to time with supposed insults to their international reputation… nay, the image of Islam, to be more correct.
Why should the turmoil of a land grab in the Middle East bear any significance to Muslims living far and wide across the globe is a mystery, unless of course if you are a historian steeped in the ancient history of the Biblical times. The Patriarch Abraham and his offspring’s birthrights being the raging torrent of dissension, which to this day has become the convenient anvil to beat the swords of war! The culture of these nomadic tribes is today the battlefield of opinion and caricature.
The modern-day Muslim having ancestors who conquered the Middle East and the European Ottoman empire, spreading their faith and doctrines far and wide even to India and the Far East, are not easily persuaded of their diminishing presence on the world stage… in as much as their internal wranglings on faith (Sunni/Shia) Arab/Muslim culture clash, and the all-powerful subterranean wealth of oil has paralysed and not galvanised their strengths.
The riches beyond dreams that oil has wrought on the Middle East diaspora and by extension the Muslim world has in fact tarnished the lustre of their golden past. The conflict of values, impressions of slavedom in the economic sense are real and confounding to them. It is a paradigm that riches can never buy peace or understanding from their nemesis the Western world which holds sway the wherewithal of progress defined as Power to Change!
That Power stems from the barrel of a gun which has not been lost on the world citizens, more so the Muslim reeling from the archaic principles that govern their conduct in the modern world. Those values that shone brightly in the Isl?mic world of Sword for Allah may have sufficed to subdue docile peasantry enamored by the pageantry and favours that Muslim warlords and Kings flaunted, no longer are the creed of the material world today, that is drunk with the essence of freedom and glorification of the individual.
The average person, including the Muslim, today enjoys far more comforts and privileges, with all the meagreness life provides, than of those halcyon days of pomp and prestige of the Royal courts! Muslims indeed fear their Islamic way of life will not be accepted by the world nor can it thrust upon all those prejudicial beliefs, be it of the socializing disgrace of the male as the omnipotent of the family structure, or the archaic value base of their Sharia law, that is purely reactive in principal. The orthodoxy and rigidity of that approach has to break against the ephemeral human rights espoused by the world, that guarantees each person is inalienable endowed by God with unassailable mobility of mind and spirit.
That in essence is the DIFFERENCE. Islam and the world are at loggerheads because God, as seen by people, is no longer the privilege of the religious fanatical view but of a more deeper substance than fear and fatalism. God is human today and lives within us!
The world will be a better place to live and continue all mankinds sojourn as we all believe in our inner beings, that as of what is unseen is the essence of the spirit, but not of which we trudge along in this world are we born so an article of faith or a romantic at work, me know not! Would there be an Avatar of goodwill in the Islamic world who can show all mankind that Muslims indeed can generate an insight from their scriptures that has belied them so far. For a Sword for Allah was ok in the Inquisition but the hour calls for persuasion, softly touched with compassion for all, rather than Conquest and gory pursuits of annihilation for what wilt thou with this world if the soul is lost! A moment of glory will have come when all Muslims will rise in unison and call for annexing their own limitations of views and subordinate their ancient beliefs and rights so also the Christians, Jews and myriad others living in prisons of conscience of their own making! For such is the Kingdom of God Tolerance, compassion and self realisation as part of that universal nirvana!
About the Author: This is a guest post by Abdul.H. Abdul is a resident of Barbados, and visited Manipal University as an exchange student last year.