Thursday, October 16, 2014

A Rude Awakening for the 'Ulema of the Modern Muslim World


Muslims these days seem to create a false dichotomy between religious, 'Ilm ad-Din, and, what they call, modern knowledge or knowledge of the temporal world, 'Ilm ad-Duniya. However, allow me to break the bubble for you guys, there is nothing, no such thing, as modern education. Creating a dichotomy between religious and modern education means that religion is not modern which is absurd. And calling the natural sciences modern is also absurd. Take a look at the greatest and most eminent Islamic scholars of the past centuries,
  • ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
    • Chemist
    • Astronomer
    • Theologian
  • ibn Taymiyyah
    • Logician
    • Philosopher of Metaphysics
    • Economist
    • Theologian
  • Abu Rayhan al-Beruni
    • Physicist
    • Geographer
    • Historian
    • Pharmacist
    • Mathematician
    • Astronomer
    • Mineralologist
    • Indologist
    • Theologian
  • Muhammad al-Ghazali
    • Jurist
    • Philosopher of Ethics
    • Philosopher of Metaphysics
    • Theologian
  • Abu Hanifa
    • Jurist
    • Philosopher of Law and Legislation
    • Philosopher of Metaphysics
    • Theologian
  • Avicenna
    • Philosopher of Metaphysics
    • Pharmacist
    • Physician
    • Astronomer
    • Chemist
    • Philosopher of the Sciences
    • Poet
    • Theologian
  • Averroes
    • Philosopher of Metaphysics
    • Pharmacist
    • Physician
    • Physicist
    • Psychologist
    • Astronomer
    • Chemist
    • Philosopher of the Sciences
    • Philosopher of Law and Legislation
    • Mathematician
    • Logician
    • Music Theorist
    • Geographer
    • Jurist
    • Poet
    • Theologian
Need I go on?

Nowadays most muftis and sheikhs are usually just muftis and sheikhs with nothing else to add to their credentials. That's why when they try to make assumptions on their rulings they make hilarious claims with no basis in science.


For example, Sheikh ibn Baz trying to speculate why Islam does not allow women to be leaders, a position that is thoroughly contested and not even accepted by most schools of Islamic law, by making scientific speculations that women are born weaker mentally and physically, neither of which is true because:
  1. There is no way to measure strength in either category since one person may be able to handle the death of a family member emotionally better than others but cannot handle losing a thousand dollars at the lottery.
    Same with physical strength, one person may be able to lift a hundred pounds on a bicep curl but cannot lift as much on a tricep dip, etc. It is all very variable.
  2. If we measured the mental strength of a person by how much critically they can think, on an average, women are better at detached critical thinking to the ends of a solution for a problem than men because men think egotistically, that is, they think based on ego, how the solution to the problem will make them appear.
To further explain point-2, a man may see that opening the cap of a bottle may be easier using a mechanical opener rather than wrestling with it using their bare arms but they will still opt for the latter solution because succeeding in it that way makes them appear stronger. A woman will just take up a mechanical opener to get the job done with as less effort as possible. They are better thinkers in that way.

Nonetheless, I digress. The point, Islam thrived in its infancy on the versatility of its polymaths, the scholars of the Golden Age, whereas today most of the mullahs are blissfully ignorant of any subject related to the natural sciences or anything outside the scriptures, a trend utterly detrimental for the Cause of the Ummah. We need to wake up.



— Fahim Ferdous Promi

No comments:

Post a Comment