By Nishthar Idroos –
Time is palpably moving fast. President Obama’s first inauguration was like yesterday. Eight years have elapsed since. “The Apprentice” will officially take over the mantle of the Oval Office come January 2017. The 45th President of the United States of America.
The world is changing and changing fast. Technology, education, health, dress – there is hardly anything in life that is not changing, some changes we like while others create fear and anxiety. The trailblazing socio-economic and political changes taking place globally, regionally and locally no different. It seems change itself is undergoing a profound change.
Regardless apparitions of the past will continue to haunt the world, one such recalcitrant ghost is ISIS. It seems expert script writers are meeting President-elect Donald J Trump at his private golf course one after the other. Let’s wish each one of them all the very best.
The soccer ball with the four English letters ISIS designed in bold letters will be soon passed on to Donald J Trump, let’s wait and see how he’ll navigate it. The way he manages will reveal the temper, tone and rhetoric with which other leaders and officials will subscribe and subsume to the official narrative of the day. Included in this distinguished panel of officials is none other than our own Minister of Justice the right honorable Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe.
We come back to the statement made by him in parliament purporting an intelligence report released one and half years ago allegedly stating that four Sri Lankans had joined ISIS. To date no prima-facie evidence had been produced to corroborate this.
ISIS among other things is a game, a ploy to rule the world and plunder resources of Muslim countries.
Not totally discounting or exonerating radical Muslims and their involvement but admittedly the picture reveals a different story. We shouldn’t get too excited about the official position. It’s also alleged by western experts that ISIS is an ingenious strategy of the western intelligence to flush out naïve Muslim youth romancing a nostalgic epoch that immortalized martyrdom.
Regardless whether it’s a western conspiracy or not, the true and trusted scholars of Islam had done their part in exemplary fashion warning Muslim youth against all forms of extremism. Their sincere intention is to educate Muslims to the best of their ability and empower them with the right knowledge so that they are able to countenance the challenges adequately.
Shaykh Abd Al-Muhsin Al-Abbaad is a major scholar from the city of Al-Madinah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He issued a statement regarding the alleged khilaafah announced by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Following is a summary of the essential points:
I think every Muslim youth wherever they may be must read the summarized points vis a vis ISIS put forward by the distinguished scholar.
- That a sect appeared a number of years ago calling itself the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS, Daish), those behind it were all unknowns, identified only by nicknames.
- They began to call themselves the Islamic Khilafah, led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, an imposter under whose command or knowledge many were killed in barbaric ways. It is better for this sect to recant and return otherwise it will simply be blown away by the wind as has happened to sects like them before.
- It is unfortunate that this alleged khilafah has received acceptance by the youth in some lands, they showed their happiness and joy like a thirsty person who sees a mirage of water, and some of them claim that pledge of allegiance is due to this unknown khalifah. How can goodness be hoped in from those who have been put to trial with Takfir and slaughter in the vilest of ways? The youth should free themselves from them and not follow any one who shouts and screams.
- Then the Shaykh cited texts to show the danger of extremism (ghuluw) in the religion and the important to return to the people of knowledge.
- Then the Shaykh cited texts that indicate the sanctity of life and the gravity of murder and taking life without due right.
- The Shaykh advised those youth to recant and to come back to their right guidance and not be led to their destruction, that they should maintain their obligation of hearing and obeying those in authority over them and to maintain the order and security of their nation.
A practicing Muslim can only express outrage at some of the actions of ISIS. Islam is the final religion of Allah Almighty and obviously does not permit the heinous killings, destruction and other abominable acts committed by ISIS and their affiliates in different regions of the world.
Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Aziz Ala – Sheikh is Saudi Arabia’s highest-ranking cleric. He stated the following “Extremist and militant ideas and terrorism which spread decay on earth, destroying human civilization, are not in any way part of Islam, but are enemy number one of Islam. Muslims are their first victims.”
Muslims are a dignified community and have lived so in this manner in Sri Lanka for centuries. It’s a good thing to take adequate corrective measures to prevent any future radicalization. Prevention is certainly better than cure. There is no greater tool better than pure education in this regard.
All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama has a significant role to play in educating the Sri Lankan Muslim youth about strange and pernicious ideology alien to Islam. They got to amass all resources necessary in the best interest of the youth. If need be tap into the scholarship of other Muslim countries. They have to educate all Moulavis with authentic proofs from the texts of Quran and Sunnah, also citing verdicts of scholars from the past and present conclusively proving that ISIS is nothing but a gross innovation to the religion of Islam. This is a formidable task and I sincerely hope the ACJU will rise to the occasion.