Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Hazrat Thanwi (RA) on Ibn Taimiyyah and Ibn Qayyim

Hadhrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thaanwi states:

"Ibn Taymiyyah and Ibn Qayyim were master and student. They were very intelligent, and masters of the pen. Their pace exceded that of a motor car. Then (at full speed) they didn’t look who came in front of them in the street-be it a child or an animal. They just went forward at full speed, continuing their own discourse without regard to what others said. This is not the way of a people who make true Tahqeeq. (Magar yeh tarz Shaan Tahqiq nahin) Their manner of discourse would be harsh . Ibn Taymiyyah(ra) did a lot of service for the deen . He was born with a harsh temperament and such was his fitra. But the kaamil(perfected individual) is he who has the perfect balance between ilm and adab , and keeps both in due perspective."

Malfuzat Volume 15, p.643

Source: SF

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Faith Dynamics

There are facts.
We need them to get through in life.
Then there is dynamics. This is more helpful in getting through life.
Whole point of life is to live it according to Islam.
Most essential issue in that is to acquire, maintain and preserve your faith.
Here is a Hadith that is effective in perfecting you faith:

Abdullah ibn Hisham (Allah be pleased with him) narrates: “We were with the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) and he was holding the hand of Umar ibn al-Khattab (Allah be pleased with him). Sayyiduna Umar said to Him: “O Messenger of Allah! You are dearer to me than everything except my own self.” The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) said: “No, by Him in Whose Hand is my soul, (you will not have complete faith) till I am dearer to you than your own self.” Then Umar (Allah be pleased with him) said to him: “However, now, by Allah, you are dearer to me than my own self.” The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him & give him peace) said: “Now, O Umar (you are a complete believer).” (Sahih al-Bukhari)

Students Movements in 1960s

Source : The Contemporary History

Comments by yours truly will be in blue colour.

Q: Why is this topic important for the present blog?
A: Yours truly has been arguing against the continuation of the AMU Student's Union. This institution is against the ethos of Aligarh Movement. Here we are looking at the genesis of the idea of Student's Union. Historically the ideas seems to have developed in the US. The students movement became so strong in America that special measures were taken to politically disarm the father ideology of Marxism there. Mrxists remember that action as the McCarthy era. If US was forced to protect itself from the bad effects of that movement then why do we Aligs think that AMUSU is such a sacred institution that it is harbinger of some good for Aligarh Movement itself?
The most striking result of the baby boom was the activism of college students during the 1960s. In the United States, the initial impetus for student activism came from the Civil Rights movement. As the decade wore on, students in the United States and elsewhere found more elements of the "establishment" that required political action: the Vietnam War, the draft, and charges that universities were complicit with the military.
Q: What is Baby Boom?
A: Between first and second world war US economy, and hence the world economy in general, took a nose dive. Slightly after the second world war US experienced a markedly increased birth rate. It is called Baby Boom. Here are some landmarks: Wall Street (Economic) Crash : 1929. US Birth Rate Minimum : 1934. US Birth rate Peak : 1948.
The first major student protest organization, the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), was founded in 1960 by Ella Baker, who had organized the Southern Christian Leadership Conference for Martin Luther King, Jr. She believed that existing civil rights organizations were out of touch with African-American students who were willing to push the movement further. Also in 1960 Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) emerged from the Student League for Industrial Democracy, created in the 1930s to try to build a political left in Great Depression America.
Remarks : Above paragraph missed two significant points. Firstly the conscription, the military draft, that compulsory military service was one of the reasons behind the students movement. It was Richard Nixon, much later who did away with the draft. Secondly the black people's organization, the Nation of Islam, lead by Elijah Mohammed was at the forefront of the civil movement. This organization, though copying many things Islamic, was not Muslim at all.

SDS became the central institution of what would soon be called the New Left. In June 1962, 59 SDS members and sympathizers, including some SNCC members, assembled at an AFL-CIO camp in Port Huron, Michigan, to develop a political manifesto.

The resulting Port Huron Statement was written by student Tom Hayden. It suggested that U.S. universities should become the locus for a new movement concerned with empowering individuals and communities.
Remark : The movement clearly has all the tell-tale signs of communist methodology that is so obvious till today. A few years back the girls from Women's College occupied the Registrar Office, during Dr P.K.Abdul Aziz's tenure, bringing not only the corresponding residential Hall to a stand still but the Registrar Office itself. Even the press was surprised by the clockwork precision of the events that took place. Amongst the AMU community it is a common knowledge who was behind the episode except the then provost of the girls residential Hall. She is clueless till today. AMU is not a place for simpletons. The  starting point of the episode was a purported sexual assault which simply disappeared into thin air as the things progressed.

SNCC was the first of these organizations to achieve national prominence. Its members, who had initiated sit-ins at segregated lunch counters, took part in the Freedom Rides of 1961, testing federal court orders desegregating interstate bus terminals. They conducted voter registration programs in several southern cities and demonstrated against segregation.
Remark : This is a side remark only. From last few paragraphs it is clear that the civil rights about which US is so keen to implement in India and the rest of the world, these civil rights are about half a century old even there.

In 1964 SNCC and CORE (the Congress of Racial Equality) staged "Freedom Summer", during which white college students were invited to teach African-American children and assist with voter registration efforts in Mississippi.
Remark : Another side remark. The blacks were getting lynched in US even in 1930s. With such a horrible immediate past it is strange that US takes a high moral ground in all things social. Or is it because of its past? So that we do not remind her, the US, of her sordid immediate past?
During that summer, three student activists, whites Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman and African-American James Chaney, were murdered by white racists. The University of California, Berkeley’s Free Speech Movement began when students returning from Freedom Summer found their university restricting political activity on campus.

White resistance to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the 1965 Voting Rights Act led activists in both SDS and SNCC to see themselves as allies of revolutionaries in the rest of the world and to move further left.
Remark : We are talking about 1960s. That is just a generation ago. It is commendable that US learned its civil lessons on its own and it learned it fast. But it does not have the right to push its ideology down other people's throat. same goes for the communists - the main contention of this post. They have an ideology but it does not match the ideology of AMU. The defining characteristic of AMU ideology is Crown of No god But God on their head.

Stokely Carmichael (later Kwami Ture), who became chairman of SNCC in 1966, coined the slogan "Black Power" to express African-American pride, which had the effect of driving white activists out of the organization.

SDS and other white-dominated activist groups had, by this time, become outraged at the escalation of the war in Vietnam. The first "teach-in" against the war took place at the University of Michigan during the spring of 1965. In April a march on Washington organized by SDS drew 20,000 protesters. It was the first of many.
Remark: One can see how old black empowerment is in US. We are at present living in the era of first black US President.

Concentration on antiwar politics had an unforeseen consequence. In 1964 SNCC staffers Mary King and Casey Hayden anonymously circulated a position paper noting male dominance in movement organization.

Later, they publicly raised the importance of feminism in civil rights and antiwar groups. Some men in the movement saw women’s issues as a trivial distraction from their own concerns about the draft. King and Hayden’s work led to women’s caucuses.
Remark : Point to note is the beginning of time line of feminist movement coming onto the stage. And concerns over the draft competing with it.

In May 1968 youth uprisings in Paris nearly brought down the government of Charles de Gaulle. A general strike led by elite Sorbonne university students, joined by many French workers, decried France’s education system and its role in the Vietnam War.

That same year, Czechoslovakia’s "Prague Spring" tried to implement "socialism with a human face" in the teeth of Soviet domination. In August Warsaw Pact troops crushed the movement, while in the United States riots erupted between Chicago police and student activists during the Democratic National Convention.
Remark : Here we have a perspective on spread of the student's movement. The point to note once again is that aprt from AMU no other institution, US government, French government, Czech government is paralyzed by the student's movement in the present times. If other countries have solved their student's movement problem then why not AMU? Let us not forget that even the citadel of Marxist ideology, the JNU, is never brought to its knees by their student's union.
Violence escalated in 1970 when National Guard units shot and killed students protesting the Vietnam War at Kent State and Jackson State Universities, touching off protests on many other campuses. But by then SNCC and SDS were collapsing. SDS had splintered at its 1969 convention into a number of groups, the best known of which, the Weathermen, took its name from a Bob Dylan song.
Remark : There are two lessons here. Brutality of US towards unarmed students as well as the resulting collapse of student's movement. And the rabble rousing poets switching to lamenting mode. 

Renamed the Weather Underground, this group is best remembered for a Greenwich Village explosion in which three members blew themselves up while assembling explosives. Broad-based student activism declined after the draft was discontinued in 1973.
Remark : The draft discontinuation remark is a red herring. US simply realized that student's body is not a proper power center to be nurtured. Are we taking heed at AMU?

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Javed, Shabana and Salman Rushdie

Javed Akhtar is left disappointed with Salman Rushdie. The infamous author wrote a rude, nasty and uncivilzed mail to Javed Akhtar's wife Shabana Azmi. Javed Akhtar has been a supporter of Salman Rushdie but he did mildly criticize Rushdie in a TV interview. That was enough to infuriate latter.

Let us get one headline out of the way. The notorious author did not have Javed's email address so he chose to communicate through Shabana. It is probably not a case of insulting the wife of your interlocutor.

The problem lies in Javed Akhtar's idealism. In spite of coming from an illustrious family, he is Jan Nisar Akhtar's son whose is a respected name in Urdu literature as well as Mumbai, Javed is a self-made man. To be self-made is usually a mixed blessing. It is a monumental triumph and it is a gigantic tragedy. Monumental triumph should be understandable because to be self-made is indeed something triumphal. It is also a gigantic tragedy because you get cut-off from reality. The giant piece of reality that your triumph is cuts you off from the more giant reality. You are a giant in one aspect of life when you can declare yourself self-made man. But that is only one aspect of life. This injunction of reality into the picture by no means diminishes the value of personal triumph.

Thus just because you created the giant angry young man of Bollywood and then made a successful transition to a lyricist and then a public intellectual speaking vaguely for Muslims does not make you a worthy espouser of Muslim cause. Nor it qualifies you to take Muslim feelings for granted. That Rushdie has given you a nasty bite does tell us that you made a mistake in recognizing him. You should not have trusted him in the first place.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Shibli Academy Orientalist Seminar - 7

For background material see here.

Title : Islam Aur Mustashriqeen (Islam and Orietalists)

Vol : 7 (Compiler : Dr Muhammed 'Arif Umari)

Contains articles, summaries and precis of corrections published in Ma'arif to orientalists mistakes about Islamic sciences and individuals.

1. Preface : Dr. Zia-ud-Deen Islahi
2. Orientalist Noldeke and Noble Qur'an : Maulana Owais Nadwi Nigrami
3. Collection and Compilation of Noble Qur'an and the Orientalists : Muhammed 'Arif Azmi Umari
4. Orientalists on Arguments of Revelation and Prophethood : Maulana Zia-ud-Deen Islahi
5. Orientalists Stand on Migration (Hijrah) : Maulana Abdur Rahman Parwaz Islahi
6. Correcting Some Mistakes of Orientalists Regarding Prophet (PBUH)'s Biography : Maulana Zia-ud-Deen Islahi
7. Imam Ash'ari and Orientalists : Maulana Mirza Muhammed Yusuf
8. Mistakes of European Orientalists Regarding Abul 'Ala Ma'ari : Late Maulana Abdul Aziz Memon
9. Islamic Sciences and Arts and European Orientalists : Maulana Abdus Salam Nadwi
10. Scientific and Artistic Treasure of Muslims and the Orientalists : Maulana Abul Kalam Azad
11. To Contradictory Views About Orientalist : Maulana Shah Muinuddin Ahmed Nadwi
12. Services and Limitations of Orientalists : Syed Wahiduddin
13. Waywardness and Contradictory Reporting in Analysis and Debate by Orientalists : Maulana Ziauddin Islahi
14. Spreading of Orientalists' Objections, Their Characteristic and Axis : Maulana Ziauddin Islahi
15. Well Known Orientalists and Their Writings, Introduction and Overview : Maulana Salman Shamsi Nadwi
16. Orientalism in Holland :  Maulana Shah Muinuddin Ahmed Nadwi
17. 18th International Orientalists Congress, Leiden, 1931: Dr Shaikh Inayatullah
18. International Orientalists Congress (1938?) : Syed Sabahuddin Abdur Rahman
19. International Orientalists Congress, Istanbul (1951?) : Dr Muhammed Hamidullah
20. International Orientalists Congress, Cambridge(1954) : Dr Muhammed Hamidullah
21. International Orientalists Congress, Munich(1957) : Dr Muhammed Hamidullah
22. 25th International Orientalists Congress, Cambridge(1958) : Dr Muhammed Hamidullah
23. 26th International Orientalists Congress, Delhi (1964) : Syed Sabahuddin Abdur Rahman
24. International Orientalists Congress in America, Ann Arbor(1967) : Dr Muhammed Hamidullah

Sir Syed Memorial Lecture - 2013

Yours truly is just back from Sir Syed Memorial Lecture - 2013.

University has a deserted look, today being a holiday since yesterday installation of Students' Union took place. A better expression for the university would be all-dug-up, a major sewage, drainage, road widening overhauling is underway.

The lecture was in Engineering College conference room. Yours truly must have been to that room after a long time for it sported all new look. The acoustically beneficial grotesque roofing has been replaced by white thermocol tiles and the floor as well as chairs have been replaced. You do feel like entering the room.

When yours truly reached Dr Salahuddin Umari, Director, Sir Syed Academy was in the process of introducing the Academy and the speaker Dr Gordon Campbell, FRAS, Professor of Renaissance Studies, Leichester University. He had chosen the topic The Inheritance of Sir Syed: A View from the West.

The lecture was not too deep and yours truly says that as a complement. A public talk is not supposed to be dry academic monologue. Sir Syed Academy had taken the thoughtful step of distributing glossy printed lecture as well as material on Academy itself.

Dr Campbell spoke about the things that included terms like 1857, traditional Perso-Arabic education at home, death of elder brother of Sir Syed, plaques in London's Mecklenburg square containing three educationists and reformers related with India including our founder, idea of a college or university, Francis Robinson, rote learning, critical learning, present dispensation at AMU, his twenty visits to India as well as his at least second lecture here at AMU, Professor Saud Alam Qasmi, Professor A.R.Kidwai, culture, Tehzeeb, importance of values, what British universities can learn from AMU and more.

Most gratifying part for yours truly was a short acknowledgement speech by Pro Vice Chancellor Brigadier Syed Ahmed Ali. He spoke with remarkable confidence as well as infectious optimism. Clarity of a serviceman was palpable. He emphasized that students should greet the teachers with As-Salamu Alaikum and divulged the fact that he and the Vice Chancellor have started wearing Sherwani on Fridays.

Yours truly lingered around for a few moments after the lecture and managed to have a few words with the PVC. It was slightly irksome to assure him that a Sherwani sporting bearded man can be in a science subject that was mentioned in the lecture just held with longing. Yours truly acknowledged his oozing confidence and conveyed a desire that he should do some thing to inject the same confidence into the hearts of our students. His momentary brooding can be taken as a sign of the fact that the point went across.

May Allah (SWT) forgive yours truly for praising a person on his face, it was meant for the good of our dear students. May He (SWT) imbibe our students with the confidence.

Shibli Academy Orientalist Seminar - 6

For background material see here.

Title : Islam Aur Mustashriqeen (Islam and Orietalists)

Vol : 6 (Compiler :Zia-ud-Deen Islahi)

Contains Urdu translation of Arabic articles on Noble Qur'an, Hadith, Fiqh, Prophetic Biography and Islamic Culture and Civilization done by the associates of Dar-ul-Musannifeen.

1. Noble Qur'an and Orientalists : Dr Iltahami Naqrah
2. Sacht and Prophetic Traditions : Dr Mustafa Al-A'azmi
3. Orientalist Sacht and Fiqh : Dr Muhammed Anas Zarqa
4. Partnership and Profit and Orientalist Ludovitch : Dr Muhammed Anas Zarqa
5. Prophetic Biography and Critical Examination of Thoughts of Orientalist Montgomery Watt : Dr Imadudin Khalil
6. Islamic Social Life in the Eyes of Orientalists : Dr Abdul Wahhab Abu Hadiba
7. Islamic Civilization of Spain in the Eyes of Orientalists : Dr Mustafa Al-Sha'a

Shibli Academy Orientalist Seminar - 5

For background material see here.

Title : Islam Aur Mustashriqeen (Islam and Orietalists)

Vol : 5 (Compiler : Syed Sabahuddin Abd-ur-Rahman)

Author : Syed Sulaiman Nadwi (RA) (d.AH 1373, 1953AC)

Includes summary of interests of orientalists in Islamic sciences and arts and then answers their objections on Islamic history.

1. Preface: European Orientalists and the Library of Alexandria
2. Detractors of islam and Jiziya
3. Orientalists of Europe Before 1800AC ( France, Germany, Switzerland, England, Holland, Austria, Denmark, Spain, Portugal, Italy)
4. From 1800AC to 1830AC ( France, England, Germany, Italy)
5. From 1830AC to 1850AC ( France, Germany, Switzerland, England, Holland, Asiatic Societies)
6. From 1850AC to 1870AC ( France, Germany, Austria, English, Russia, Spain)
7.  From 1870AC to 1880AC ( France, Germany, Russia)
8. Lecture of a German Orientalist on Spread of Islam
9. Orientalists of Europe, Love of God and Islam
10.  Orientalists of Europe and Muhammed bin Umar Al-Waqidi
11. Again Waqidi
12. Answer to a Letter of an English University
13. Some Made Up Stories of Church of England
14. Foremost Lines

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Hillary Clinton's Half Truth

A BBC headline says, quoting Hillary Clinton, that the world has become a safer place.

Oh, yeah. As long as you keep Islam and Muslims out. Islam and Muslims remain singled out as those entities for who it is even desirable to make the world a safe place. Muslim world is still reeling under the American onslaught in particular and western onslaught in general. Your damage to Muslim world has been more extensive than your damage to Japan and the communist block. Your overall record, if not putting Hitler's record to shame, will surely compete with him. The strange thing is that the world still is not waking up to the monstrosity that US has turned out to be. It is strange that the world takes US triumph as triumph, US happiness as happiness and US sorrow as sorrow. A pathetic state of affairs where the rest of the world has lost its individuality having annihilated its hopes, aspirations and expectations in the hopes, aspirations and expectations of US. Why else the world will modulate its feelings with those of US? It is all the more strange looking at the condition that US society finds itself in. Just think of the too often occurring random shootings.