By Faqir Ibrahim (Teacher at Alianza Islamica)
Many of us have lived a lifetime in Islam in the United States. We are completing our sixth decade –what a spiritual adventure it has been! With all of the assaults upon the glorious nature of our faith, false maligning and sad misreading’s by fellow Muslims world-wide I would never be anywhere else and my prayer daily is that my faith be preserved and that I die and be resurrected as I lived as a Muslim, Sunni, Sufi-
Islam is daily assaulted both by Islamophobia critics as well as deluded monsters calling themselves Islamicts; ironically theses hating factions agree on their distorted vision of the Quran and Sharia and join hands in portraying the ugliest, cruelest distortions of our religion. But let me recall why myself and so many others have no doubt that our faith is true and enlightened, that Islam means civilization, tolerance compassion and liberation. So to both factions of false media Islam let us assure them, you both live in a fantasy world removed from history and destined to failure.
The a historical media Islam inhabits a spot oblivious to the vicious colonial past , it denies its legacy of brutal racism first by religion and then equally violent scientific theories of white supremacy justifying the ravishing of the world. Indeed much of the insane lashing out in the 3rd world today is the final stages of that 300 year history. Islam has been perceived for the past few centuries as both the unity of God as well as the unity of the human race. The Quran preaches that all human beings are from the same origin. Its colors, tribes and languages are variations from our father Adam. How simple to recall this shared message of The Bible and Quran yet how easily twisted into exploitive social system from which today the world shudders. What must be stressed is that just as belief in Allah requires an act of faith, yes there are rational indications of divine maintenance of creation, none the less ultimately each person must decide whether the call to believe in God is true or not. No less is this the case regarding the unity of our human species. Let us not forget that official science as well as University teachings was the ranking of mankind by race with whites on top and blacks at the lowest run g. So it requires the strength of faith to adopt the Quran glorious teaching regarding our shared humanity.
Islam is the middle path between the extremes of Judaism and Christianity. Perhaps the clearest example of the balanced stance of Islam was the question of Jesus. Where the Jews on one hand out rightly rejected him and ultimately sought his condemnation and death, the Christians on the other hand went to the absurdity of declaring the Messiah to be the living God defying all of the monotheism of the bible and ancient Semitic teachings. The middle stance of the Quran held in many of the most baffling issues of the human race. So Jesus was a messenger in the long line of semetic prophets yet clearly not God or His son. Divorce and remarriage and countless other issues where the Quran corrected and guided to the sanest and most pervasive stance. In each case of major issues we find that Islam miraculously took the middle path free of extremes. Indeed Muslim history reveals that every sect of Islam was a revival of some ancient balanced position. So for us in the west let us gladly embrace our Islamic lifetime based upon a vision of Islam that is not exclusively that of the East but rather one the Quran says is neither East nor West .
A few books related to the above article:
The mismeasure of man Stephen Jay Gould History of American Scientific racial theories
The King Incorporated Neal Ascherson A telling of some of the most brutal aspects colonialism
The Eternal Message of Muhammad, Abdul Al Rahman Azzam
“I was given a copy of the eternal message” Malcolm X although first published in 1954 this book remains relevant and offers a broad view of Islam and modern history.