22 March 2005

The cry for Islam

Once upon a time in a hostile arid land far away there was chaos, battle, pain and uncertainty. And no hope for the les miserables. Blood spilling and women looting were a part of every day life there.
Barbaric tribes and warlords killed all men and raped all women (and children and sometimes men too!) for entertainment and for power. In those days mothers (the few that were left alive) bore the pain of childbirth for two outcomes: either to create men to be sent to their deaths in battle or to watch their female newborns be buried alive. (Because females served no other purpose, in those cursed times, except be objects of sex-slavery).
And as for the leaders they indulged when they were alive. In food, orgies, and intoxicants until one day somebody else slaughtered them.
And fishing in these muddy waters were wacky wizards...those who instilled fear in the minds of everyone (as always) with the help of their soulless stone gods (which numbered just over a few thousands).
In this land it was a period of darkness, hollow-idol worship and blood sacrifices of history's ugliest.

Then in the 7th centutry a glitch occurred in the system. A bug in The Matrix called Mohammed : The ONE who managed to radically reform everything in this land with a new idea. Reminds me of a verse:
“yada yada hi dharmasyaglanir bhavati bharataabhyutthanam adharmasyatadatmanam srjamy aham paritranaya sadhunamvinasaya ca duskritamdharma-samsthapanarthayasambhavami yuge yuge”Translation:
“Whenever and wherever there is a decline in dharma, O descendant of Bharata, and a predominant rise of irreligion—at that time I descend Myself. To deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to re-establish the principles of religion, I Myself appear millennium after millennium”

This illiterate and simple spiritual man, who is now called respectfully as Prophet Mohammed (Peace be upon him), based on The Almighty’s words that was revealed to him through the Angel Gabriel, brought about radical changes in the most impossible of situations:
  1. Abolished intoxicants or mind-influencers of any kind by labeling them 'Haraam'
  2. Safeguarded females and created a sense of respect towards their kind. How? Asked females to wear the purdah in order to avoid the leerings of men. Polygamy was introduced in order to take care of the widowed masses (Most men were dead remember?). On one condition: that each wife be treated equally.
  3. Brought the perpetual inter-tribal warring to a pause by introducing the concept of ‘brotherhood’
  4. Brought criminal activities to the lowest levels by the strict use of Shari-at, the Islamic law. Rob and off goes your hand; kill and off goes your head. Ouch!
  5. Inculcated cleanliness into the local DNA. Muslims will have to now wash their bodies or clean parts of it at least 3 times before entering the mosque. Washing was almost unheard of in the pre-Islamic barbarian land and that too in a desert!
  6. Instilled discipline to every Muslim life by fixing routines and timing for worship, fasting and pilgrimages
  7. Curtailed greed by abolishing interest on money and forcing alms to poor
  8. Gave a quantum leapboard to the spirituality process. Moved forward from worshipping multiple idol gods, the first stages of faith, to the advanced stage of a Formless, Omnipresent Allah
Was he a leader or what?
True, as usual with any religion, all of the above rules may have been twisted by now. Still Islam was clearly a necessity at those turbulent times. In my view Islam (and Buddhism) is a true religion in the true sense of the word religion.

One can observe Islam’s beauty if one manages to get into the marrow of the Word. Islam preaches the beauty of everything in nature and that God is in its details. In fact Islam is so nature-accepting that they have chosen green as their religion's colour!

Some gyan for the Islam-ignorant:
  • The word ‘Allah’ literally means ‘God’ in Arabic. So it doesn not mean another Entity which is different from what is in your religion. Understand?
  • Contrary to popular beliefs: unlike Christians, especially the new-age fundamentalists, Islam do not allow proselytization. An individual should willingly volunteer to convert to Islam.
  • Circumcision is not Islamic but Jewish in origin. If not for whatever ambiguous that happened in the New Testament we would find most Christians circumcised too!
  • Sometimes I feel they respect Jesus and the Virgin Mary more than the Christians. Jesus is mentioned as the ‘purest of the prophets’ in the Koran
  • While Europe was in its darkest ages Middle East was shinning golden bright with researches in alchemy, mathematics, calligraphy etc. Trade flourished. For those who consider that Muslims and/or Arabs to be stupid go read history and count the contributions that came out of this Golden age. If I remember rightly even the numerals we use now are of Arabic origin.
  1. Manoj VS
  2. Islam for Beginners
  3. Eaters of the dead by Michael Crichton

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