Saturday, 21 April 2012

The Second Golden Age of Islam

My dearest Brothers and Sisters, Asslamualaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuhu.

I am writing this to highlight a grave problem in our Muslim Ummah.  A few centuries ago, from the time of our beloved Prophet (SAW)‘s  death until around the 12th century, Islam was on the rise. Islam was the major superpower, the Muslim empire extended from Spain all the way to India, including parts of Africa and the Far East. In the Golden Age of Islam, Muslims were intellectually unrivalled in nearly all fields known whether it be medicine, physics, astronomy, chemistry, mathematics, architecture or literature, to name just a few. Students from the Western world would come to study at our universities. Cities like Baghdad, Damascus, Cairo and Cordoba were the centers of civilization. While Europe floundered through the Dark Ages, Muslims were the very picture of progress and modernity.

Masjid in Cordoba, Spain

Sadly, my dear brothers and sisters, the Golden Era of Islam did not last. When we, the Muslim Ummah became obsessed with the material things of this dunia; made money our master. When we the Muslim Ummah became disunited, started fighting amongst ourselves. When we the Muslim Ummah turned away from the teachings of Islam, we in actuality stepped aside, leaving the door wide open for Western civilizations to dominate over us, colonize our lands, enforce their way of life upon us.

But you may say, we have our independence now! Malaysia was liberated from British rule in 1957. We are free to once again build up the Muslim Ummah. We are free to once again lead the world in all fields. But are we truly? Are we truly free to once again raise high the banner of Islam?

Al Aqsa Masjid, Jerusalem
Then why is this not happening? Why is it that Palestinians are still suffering at the hands of Israel? Why is it that Syrians are still being murdered everyday? Why is it that we don’t have an audible voice on the international stage? Why is it that countries like US and Britain can just simply push us around, do whatever they like with us, invade our lands, even kill our Muslim brothers and sisters?

The problem, my dear brothers and sisters, is not from the Western world. The problem is with us. It is from our mindset. The type of thinking most of us have today is that the Western world is modern and forward thinking, futuristic, progressive; while we, we are backward, thinking we are steeped in a religion that does not allow us to progress.

And therefore, what do we do? We eat their food. We listen to their music. We idolize their celebrities. We live the way they live, not caring whether it is immoral or not. We model our government system on theirs, our education system on theirs. We prefer to speak their language, to mimic their ideas, to study at their universities. How many of us would refuse an opportunity to study in the US or the UK?

Let me ask another question. How did the first Golden age of Islam come about? Did it come about by the early Muslims parroting others ideas and thoughts? Or did it come about from their strict adherence to the teachings of Allah’s messenger (PBUH) and the Quran, leading them to come up with their own ideas based on Islamic teachings? From their ability to take action? To question and to not just blindly follow?

So, my dear Muslim brothers sisters, if we truly want our Ummah to rise again we need to work for it. We can’t just sit around, making dua but not doing anything ourselves. Allah helps those who help themselves.  Allah says in the Holy Quran, in Surah Ra’d, verse 11:

 Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves.”

If we are prepared to change our mindset. If we are prepared to start truly implementing Islam in every aspect of our lives. If we are prepared to start taking action, even if it is small, Inshaallah, there will be another Golden Age of Islam.

Asslamualaikum wa Rahamatullahi wa Barakatuhu

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