Friday, 15 August 2008

Secularism shouldn't affect us!

I received a fair amount of stick for my response to a post by Raniya last month. The post appealed for a very noble cause, and I sincerely wish her all the best for the work she's doing.

My comment stated that the majority of social issues our country is facing today are down to the weakening of our faith in Islam. Some people failed to comprehend, or rather, preferred to misunderstand this statement and asked me to "give religion a break because it is the cause of half the problems of the world." Some even went as far as to accuse me of turning a blind eye to all the problems and their victims. No, I never mentioned anything of that sort, and doing so will be an act of utter stupidity.

Anyway, this "fiasco" got me thinking. Why do some people think religion is the root of all the atrocities that are taking place, not just here in Maldives, but all around the world? So I thought hard and did some research. And what did I find out? Religion really is partly to blame, but not in the way many so-called liberals think. With the increase in secularist societies, new laws are being established with the aim of providing the population with as much independence as possible. Many of these laws, in layman's terms, usually comes back to bite the population on the backside. Why? Because they contradict religion, and therefore contradict the natural laws of the human race.

If you look around, you may notice that this is particularly noticeable in Islamic countries. After many countries with majority Muslim populations "abandoned" our religion, we started to go backwards. After Europe (the so-called Christian continent) abandoned Christianity, they flourished. My point here is that the belief that religion is a ridiculous figment of human imagination most probably sprouted from societies with majority Christian populations. It is, after all, a religion created by fabrication, and has been undergoing fabrication for more than 2000 years. The iron-fisted ruling by churches, their detachment from the world we know, their ridiculously easy ways of "erasing sins", their methods of spreading the religion and their denial of key scientific theories resulted in many getting disillusioned. People began to treat religion as an obstacle that prevented them from modernizing and living their lives fully. They started to believe that religion and the laws within their societies were separate things. Thus secularism was born.

Naturally, with the widespread of mass media, many Muslims fell head over heels in trying to implement such beliefs within their societies. Look at us Maldivians, for instance. For many of us, religion is merely praying, fasting, ablution etc. I find it highly amusing to see people suddenly switching to "Religious Mode" when they're about to pray. From what I've learned, Islam is a way of life. It is a religion which states that the purpose of your life is to worship God. Of course, people from Western backgrounds (i.e, where concentration of Muslims are low) usually misunderstand this statement. For them, total devotion means spending the whole day at church, praying on their knees with their heads bent. This is largely due to the fact that there actually are people who act this way. In Islam, total devotion to God means doing everything in life the way we were instructed to. A few simple everyday examples include avoiding haram foods, avoiding the usage of foul language while communicating, keeping yourself in good shape, spending quality time with your family and friends etc. Islam does not separate the worldly affairs and religion. It is a religion that covers everything that is connected to our lives, encourages free thought and promotes education and modernization as long as we hold on to the Islamic values. People usually don't realize that these laws Allah asked us to follow are really for our own good.

12 comments:

muiz said...

Good article. Keep up the good work!

.mini said...

i just wish that everyone thinks like you
coz its just hard to see maldivians act the way they do
makes me go crazy but what can i do about it

nice post

bulhaa said...

hear hear.

Anonymous said...

there are people who would think your article is hilarious. those liberals as you've stated. they will still think that you are very behind. as your thoughts are silly to them. they are the intellectuals in the country. you are not up to their level of understanding the world. as thats all they belive that exists. this world and its pleasures. alone.

blueprint said...

isnt it annoying that the people who express negative views are always "anonymous", too cowardly to reveal themselves? (eyeroll)
uv done some research. wouldnt know to judge on the solidarity of that, of course.bt i totally believe that the root cause of all the problems is the faith weakening. i dont think my supervisor was much impressed when i told her that in a prefects interview last last year-ish.
(im gonna look up secularism now) :)

Anonymous said...

blurprint: in case if you were referring to the 'anonymous' before your comment, its not a negative comment to the article. I was referring to the 'liberals' as the author mentioned. These liberals think they are free and are at a higher state than all others. There are many such bloggers. I, in not way, think that the author of this blog is one of them. And may god help the 'liberal's clear their mind of western rubbish.

blueprint said...

one more for your list: Violet tsirblou :P

bt i bet u know that already?

(sorry, nt related to this post)

Control Freak said...

blueprint: violet tsirblou?? i thot u were barking mad at first, but then decided to look it up..another arty pseudonymn!! i wud like u to keep anythin related to The Time Paradox hush-hush for a while coz i havnt managed to read it yet! still waitin for someone else to finish..

BubbleToes said...

gud article..lyk mini sed, if only everithought this way..

Yaamyn said...

I disagree with your interpretation of that comment.

Religion itself isnt to blame. It's the followers interpretation of it that's the root of most of the world's troubles.

The trouble is that the people who hijack the religion and claim to KNOW more.
They pick verses from the holy book completely out of context, give it their own perverted colors.. and force them on the rest.

That includes Islamist forces aroudn the world.. the 'Hindutva' extremists in India.. and so on.

A wise man once said : 'Bigotry is a hand that seeks to protect the truth.. with a grip that kills it!'

Including the stripped down, rigid, literal interpretations of religion to everything from dress codes to governance gives reason for these bigots to exist.

Today, the average Maldivian thinks it's blasphemous to have a church or temple in the Maldives.
(Most of the Islamic countries in the world have plenty)

Today, the average Maldivian lady has to face unimaginable social pressures and sermons from relatives and neighbours to don the hijab or wear a burqa.

A simple book on the topic of 'Apostasy' is banned under this pressure.

We may not know it yet, but we're going the Taliban way.. The freedom to question these self proclaimed Mullahs is a freedom I'm not going to give away so easily!

:p

Ultimately the truth boils down to this.. the person who uses the word 'Islam says this.. ' before he commits murder is NOT a Muslim.

Faith is personal. You cannot makea person Muslim by covering her in a Hijab and getting her to pray.

Yaamyn said...

I disagree with your interpretation of that comment.

Religion itself isnt to blame. It's the followers interpretation of it that's the root of most of the world's troubles.

The trouble is that the people who hijack the religion and claim to KNOW more.
They pick verses from the holy book completely out of context, give it their own perverted colors.. and force them on the rest.

That includes Islamist forces aroudn the world.. the 'Hindutva' extremists in India.. and so on.

A wise man once said : 'Bigotry is a hand that seeks to protect the truth.. with a grip that kills it!'

Including the stripped down, rigid, literal interpretations of religion to everything from dress codes to governance gives reason for these bigots to exist.

Today, the average Maldivian thinks it's blasphemous to have a church or temple in the Maldives.
(Most of the Islamic countries in the world have plenty)

Today, the average Maldivian lady has to face unimaginable social pressures and sermons from relatives and neighbours to don the hijab or wear a burqa.

A simple book on the topic of 'Apostasy' is banned under this pressure.

We may not know it yet, but we're going the Taliban way.. The freedom to question these self proclaimed Mullahs is a freedom I'm not going to give away so easily!

:p

Ultimately the truth boils down to this.. the person who uses the word 'Islam says this.. ' before he commits murder is NOT a Muslim.

Faith is personal. You cannot makea person Muslim by covering her in a Hijab and getting her to pray.

Control Freak said...

i agree with u to a certain extent yaamyn.
first, i think im right in agreeing with u on the fact that there're ppl out there who're distorting whats said in the Quran & the prophet's hadith for their own benefits. BUT u also mentioned that we're goin "the Taliban way". if u look closely at our society, u'll see that u cant be more mistaken. yes i know, there're certain individuals who add more to religion and make it seem like a violent beast that eats into our freedom to live, but on the other hand, there're the other extremistis that for some reason ppl never talk about; those who claim to know more about the Quran & hadith than they really do and distort religion in the opposite direction. u just have to look at the decline in the number of ppl who've been attending mosques for their prayers in the past few years. that's not the Taleban way now, is it? im not in any way saying that attending mosques for prayers is a sign of extremism btw, but u get my point.
i also happen to agree with u about the fact that faith is personal. my faith is certainly very personal to me as it makes up not only my character but also me as a person. i knw that ur one of those anti-Hijabi advocates who think women are being oppressed by wearing it. its quite the opposite mate, as Muslim women like to be respected and dislike being gawked all the time by the opposite sex. (although ur right about some girls getting disillusioned by being forced to wear the burqa at very young ages; my islam teacher once told me that we shouldnt get overly forceful while explaining religious issues) i hear western feminists complaining all the time about women not being given the respect they deserve by men, all the while they're wearing low-cut dresses and displaying hulking cleavages :D .. now tell me why you dont want women to wear the Hijab? u probably wont like to admit it, but u prefer women to be easy, eh?
but never mind that. yes, there're ppl of the opposite extremes living here in maldives. some like to call everyone but themselves "KAAFIRS!" and the others are snide folk who're led astray by their own stupidity. we really have to do something abt this or risk being stuck in limbo in the near future.