right guidance is hard

a very nice post by yursil talks about hadith and what they are and arenot supposed to have been.

The opposite of Taqlid is the approach taken by the Ahl ul Hadith (People of Hadith), otherwise known as Salafi’s or Wahabi’s. Their influence has been far and the printing press has been their friend indeed. Wrapped in source texts they seek every answer in between marks on paper, not realizing the heaviness of those texts and the burden they bear.

Hadith were an attempt at capturing the Amal (Manners) of the Prophet (صلي الله عليه و سلم) in a supplementary way for future generations. They were not meant to replace those who the Prophet (صلي الله عليه و سلم) himself described as his inheritors and those who the Quran praises. Reading Hadith to achieve those manners is possible for pieces here and there, but at the same time it is quite like parents communicating to their child only through one way text messages. Such an approach is insufficient to handle the needs of transmitting the fundamental expressions of our faith (including ritual prayer) much less raising a well rounded person.

Today’s Muslims are, for the most part, like such children.

not to say that i am an adult but this is very true we are all children, i mean i a community way. We have been made into children by the colonial powers and now are shadows of what we are supposed to be, and it is because we look for the easy fix like Bukhari instead. in my last post I did mention that I don't like the way that muslims make Bukhari into a prophet and there is a lot of silly things in Bukhari and it shoudl be okay to be able to say that. Now there is even a big book out slandering the Prophet by the jihad watch man and he uses Bukhari as his source! Doesn't that tell us something about Bukhari? And there are muslims who think Ayesha was only 9 years old too. Again thanks to Bukhari.

And then look at The Transhumanist who speaks beautifully about reason. Isn't Bukhari the opposite of this? How I wish muslims could do this:

It is speculative reasoning (al-nazar) which leads to knowledge of God, because He is not known by the way of necessity (daruratan) nor by the senses (bi l-mushahada). Thus, He must be known by reflection and speculation.
The Mu'tazilis had a nuanced theory regarding reason, Divine revelation, and the relationship between them. They celebrated power of reason and human intellectual power. To them, it is the human intellect that guides a human to know God, His attributes, and the very basics of morality.

that is so beautiful and yet i admire it but i do not know God except through my own imams and shayks so the question is am I doing taqlid? how do i know my imams and shayks are rightly guided? ar they just reading bukhari in the back room? i dont think that the mutazhili survived to today because what they say sounds great but who actually achieves that? everyone eventually just relies on someone else and then we assume it is taqlid. maybe we dont have the institutions for proper taqlid anymore though because bukhari has eaten them all.

it is still ramadan and I have been neglecting my qur'an with my blogging bad habit but then again maybe thinking about issues like this is part of my ibadat. this i guess is my attempt at reason but i am not a fancy thinker, i would rather just follow tradition rather than try and reason my way to something that is incorrect and how would I even know? I want to be right, not wrong.

Liberty. Humanity. Discovery. Victory.

I am amazed at the self-importance of some people. at the Imperialist's blog they always put themselves to be very high minded about freedom and human rights. Then look closer. here is a post that says

It's not personal. It's a system, and it's in the Koran and in the example of the Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) and in history and in the systems of laws and the cultural influences derived from all of the above. This, you can't alter. You can't get a fundamentally friendly Islam.

What you can have is simply less Islam, and more of other alternatives which aren't so hostile. And that is what I advocate that we aim at.

there's more

The tragedy can be denied if we deny that there are really moderate Muslims and friendly and upright people on the other side of the line that Islam draws between itself and the non-Muslim world, but I don't agree with blinding ourselves to the goodness of other people, even if we may not be able to avoid fighting them.

Rather, we are called by history to face up to a tragedy: that we have to oppose and diminish a system that is intractably and (in the context of proliferating nuclear weapons) fatally hostile to us, even though that will enrage and alienate the large absolute numbers of genuinely good and moderate people within that system, people who would like Islam to be friendly, kind and fair, even though, friendly or unfriendly, kind or unkind, and fair or anciently wedded to prejudices and violent supremacism in practice, it is still their religion, and since it is a political religion, still their side.

ok then. less Islam. good luck with that.

oh my goodness

I call him the Mujahid because he knows how to fight. I criticize him sometimes because I think that his intentions are very good but because he doesn't always consider who it is necessary to fight. Now the Mujahid has drawn cartoons about the Prophet SAW and his marriage to Zaynab and this has started a gigantic argument that is quite depressing to see during Ramadan.

To be honest I don't really understand the comic, but it looks like the Mujahid is trying to put a human side on the Prophet SAW. The problem with this is that it reduces the Prophet to just another man. The Mujahid probably wants to relate to him but we cannot relate to him, we are lesser. Also the Mujahid thinks too much about sex and so we need a good aunty to find him a girl quickly!

Someone says in the comment that the comic was inspired by a post here at my blog. I hope that is not true. I think we should make fun of ourselfes. But not of our religion or our holy people. If we do that then we will not be able to treat our own faith with respect and that is the problem that the Christians in the US have today.

I somehow feel that the Mujahid had drawn the comic for the benefit more of non muslims like the Liberal Hawk and the Transhumanist rather than his fellow muslims. Why does he feel that we need to have art to be inspired? I know a few artisty types and they always insist that if you don't like their art than you "dont get it" and are not intellectual equal enough. I get this feeling from The Mujahid constantly telling muslims that we need to see things his way. But his way of seeing things is very influenced by the non-muslims. I see him drifting away from us sometimes.

and Anyway, hadith are useless. What do they really do but create arguments and distract the muslims from what is important? I do not write SAW after Bukhari's name!


The Transhumanist says that it is ok for people to make fun of Islam and in fact this should be encouraged. I disagree because that is really rude behavior and this is supposed to be a civilized society. I do not walk up to people and insult them so why do should I not be offended if same happens to me? Yes free speech is important and when I get offended by a rude insult then i will express that I am insulted and that too is free speech.

Still, Transhumanist says that humor will help lessen power of the mullahs over the people. This assumes that there is no self mocking humor in Islamic world. Well, look at what The Arabist says about a tv show in Saudi Arabia!

JEDDAH, 30 September 2006 — For years comedy has been used to satirize the state or society in the Arab world. It is said to be the only way to criticize the systems in the region without having to spend a night or two in lockups.

More than two decades have passed since Syrian icon Dareed Laham starred in his hit motion picture “The Border”. In the film, Laham criticized Arab-style bureaucracy in a production that has become a landmark for the modern history of political satire in the Middle East. Today, Arabs can get a little relief from the sometimes-frustrating realities of politics and society by watching “Tash Ma Tash,” which first appeared on Saudi TV during Ramadan 14 years ago.

"Tash Ma Tash" is somewhat of a phenomenon in the Middle East. It's one of the most widely viewed TV programs during the month of Ramadan, popular for its ascerbic attacks on the status quo. What's somewhat surprising (at least to those who have little knowledge of Saudi Arabs) is that it is a Saudi production, in Arabic, so clearly for domestic consumption.

One episode this year satirized the recruitment of terrorists, having the would-be terrorists compete in an "American Idol" type show. You can imagine how well that went down in some quarters.

Anyone who goes to Middle East can see for themselves that muslim world has very funny sense of humor. in fact sense of humor there is better than in America where everything funny is either about politics or sex.

it comes back to this simple ting: do you want good relations with someone? then don't be rude and insult them. Don't make excuses for such behavior, either.