I find myself in a state of mind in these troubling times which is different from that of many otherwise likeminded Muslim brothers and sisters. I want to therefore state my mind:
I find many Muslim brothers spending a good part of their time accusing the US, the UK, Israel, and India of inflicting atrocities on Muslims and displaying double standards while dealing with Muslims. It is also quite often mentioned that there is a grand, global conspiracy against Islam and Muslims that is at the heart of whatever is happening in our times.
Although some of these allegations could be partly true, I find the activities of these brothers not only a futile exercise, but also one which is proving to be counter-productive. The reasons for my opinion are many: i) The addressees of these criticisms aren’t even listening to us. ii) Muslims are getting a false impression that there was nothing seriously wrong with them; all their woes owed themselves to the grand conspiracy of the western and some sinister eastern powers. The result is that Muslims are not doing at all what they needed to do the most during these times: to reform themselves morally and spiritually. iii) As a result of the strong criticism against the west, there is an east-west or Islam-kufr divide created which is highly inimical for the task of effectively disseminating the true message of Islam. We are losing many potential Umars because we find them in their first six years of the prophetic mission. iv) A false impression is being created that this world is being run not by God but by the US and its allies. Because had we believed that God was running the affairs of this world, instead of living with the negative mindset that has plagued many Muslims struggling to regain the lost glory of Islam, they would have focused on correcting themselves and believed in the Quranic message: “They plotted a plan (against the prophet) and Allah also designed a plan. And Allah is the best planner.” v) As a result of the emotional rhetoric of some Muslims, some others have taken up arms to undertake ‘Jihad’ against ‘Kufr’, thus causing not only hundreds and thousands of innocent lives to be lost but also tarnishing the good name of Islam. By indulging in this completely unnecessary war against the west, we are losing our innocent lives, military strength, and most importantly, the good image of Islam.
What then should we do? i) We should buy peace at all costs; focus our attention on moral, spiritual, and material progress of Muslims; ii) invite people, both Muslims and non-Muslims, to the true religion of God; iii) fight legally and politically –- and not militarily — our cases wherever our interests are being harmed; and iv) undertake a Jihad to remove poverty and ignorance — the two biggest enemies –- from Muslims.