Our methods: to believe and to struggle. The acceptance of this destiny is the supreme and final idea of Islam. Destiny -- does it exist and what form does it take? Let us look at our own lives and see what has remained of our most precious plans and the dreams of our youth? How limited is what we call our will, how tremendous and unlimited is our destiny! Man has been cast down upon this world and made dependent on many facts over which he has no power.
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Our methods: to believe and to struggle. The acceptance of this destiny is the supreme and final idea of Islam. Destiny -- does it exist and what form does it take? Let us look at our own lives and see what has remained of our most precious plans and the dreams of our youth?
How limited is what we call our will, how tremendous and unlimited is our destiny! Man has been cast down upon this world and made dependent on many facts over which he has no power. His life is influenced by both very remote and very near factors. During the Allied invasion of Europe in , there was, for a moment, a general disturbance in radio communications which could have been fatal for the operations under way.
Many years later, the disturbance was explained as a huge explosion in the Andromeda constellation, several million light years away form our planet. As our knowledge of the world grows, so does our realization that we will never be complete masters of our fate. Even supposing the greatest possible progress of science, the amount of factors under our control will always be insignificant compared to the amount of those beyond it. Man is not proportional to the world.
He and his lifetime me not the measuring units of the pace of things. Islam arranges the world by means of upbringing, education, and laws. That is its narrower scope; submission to God is the broader one.
Individual justice can never be fully satisfied within the conditions of existence. We can follow all Islamic rules which, in their ultimate result, should provide us with the "happiness in both worlds"; moreover, we can follow all other norms, medical, social and moral but, because of the terrific entanglement of destinies, desires and accidents, we can still suffer in body and soul.
What can console a mother who has lost her only son? Is there any solace for a man who has been disabled in an accident? We ought to become conscious of our human condition. We are immersed in situation. I can work to change my situation, but there are situations which are essentially unchangeable, even when their appearance takes a new look, and when their victorious power is veiled: l must die; I must suffer; I must fight; I am a victim of chance; I get inevitably entangled in guilt.
These basic conditions of our existence are referred to as "the border situations. After that, children will still go on dying unjustly even in the most perfect of societies. Man, at best, can only give himself the task of reducing arithmetically the sufferings of this world. Still, injustice and pain will continue and, however limited, they will never cease to be blasphemy. In submission to God, there is some of every human wisdom except one: shallow optimism. Submission is the story of human destiny, and that is why it is inevitably permeated with pessimism: for "every destiny is tragic and dramatic if we come down to its bottom.
It is the recognition of life as it is and a conscious decision to bear and to endure. In this point, Islam differs radically from the superficial idealism and optimism of European philosophy and its naive story about "the best of all possible worlds. Belief in God and His providence offers a feeling of security which cannot be made up for with anything else. Submission to God does not imply passivity as many people wrongly believe.
In fact, "all heroic races have believed in destiny. It is a new relation between man and God and, therefore, between man and man. Our involvement and our struggle are human and reasonable and have the token of moderation and serenity only through the belief that the ultimate result is not in our hands.
It is up to us to work, the rest is in the hands of God. Submission to God is the only human and dignified way out of the unsolvable senselessness of life, a way out without revolt, despair, nihilism, or suicide. It is a heroic feeling not of a hero, but of an ordinary man who has done his duty and accepted his destiny. Islam does not get its name from its laws, orders, or prohibitions, nor from the efforts of the body and soul it claims, but from something that encompasses and surmounts all that: from a moment of cognition, from the strength of the soul to face the times, from the readiness to endure everything that an existence can offer, from the truth of submission to God.
Submission to God, thy name is Islam!
Submission to God
From: Dialogue, Paris, , Of the local figures who emerged from the wreckage of the former Yugoslavia, the President of Bosnia Herzegovina, Alija Izetbegovic, is by far the most respected in the world outside, and notably in the United States 1. While younger men like Haris Silajdzic and Mohamed Sacirbey defended his government to the world with consummate skill and in perfect English, Izetbegovic was a largely silent figure on television screens, the elder statesman whose serious mein expressed both worry and serenity, reflecting the martyrdom of his people. The respect accorded him has rarely taken the form of interest in the ideas on which he based his Party of Democratic Action SDA , the Muslim political movement in control of the Sarajevo government. In Europe and America, Izetbegovic is seen much more as a symbol than as a political leader with a particular program. The war in Bosnia Herzegovina aroused far more passion in the West than the earlier war in Croatia because it brought to the television screens the revelation of a European Islam that offered the ideal model for solving a current problem of vital importance in countries such as France: assimilation of Muslim immigrant populations. Sarajevo was discovered as a multicultural paradise, an oasis of civilization, populated mainly by gentle blue eyed Muslims, practicing musical instruments and expressing sentiments of tolerance for their neighbors of other religions. Especially on the liberal left, many intellectuals were, and largely remain, convinced that multicultural Sarajevo represented a test case for the survival of European integration in the broadest sense 2.
Islam Between East And West Alija Izetbegovic
This reaction in a Federal Republic with almost one half of its population consisting of declared adherents to Islam alarmed the Communist rulers as a manifestation of extreme religious nationalism. What the Communist authorities did not know, as they used repression, revulsion against both secularism and distortions of Islam has many antecedents in history as a much wider reaction within Muslim societies to impositions of the West since the Crusades 3. Western incursions into the House of Islam came in many ways, shapes and forms Still, the prevailing perception among the devout Muslims defined all of them as a continuous attempt to drive man from God and replace the submission to His will with sterile and self destructing individualism as well as materialism. Later, they tried to find avenues through which Muslim societies could come to incorporate the advances of Western Science without allowing to be dominated by materialism at the same time In the end, Al-Ghazzali abandoned his unusually interesting philosophical endeavours and became an active advocate for something radically different. He rejected reason as the path to God and decreed that the only way to communicate with Him is through personal experience of ecstasy A major subdivision ensued within Islam between those who subscribed to this conclusion and others who did not expurgate rationalism from devotion to God within Islam. In the same sense, the social order reflects the ideals of religion and ethics while both Christianity and materialism are clearly distinct from Islam because they lack both the principle of balance and the merger of body and soul. The problem of incorporation, however, remains unresolved, vexing but not equally acute in every corner of the Islamic world in respect to the relationship of Western science, materialism and their impact on Muslim societies.
Islam Between East and West