Friday, January 14, 2011
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
(i) What is a man morally?
(ii) What a man ought to be?
(iii) What deeds comprise piety?
As regards the first Iwo questions there can be no difference to their answers and the whole human race is unanimous on the point that man is bad and that he should be good. The differences arise so far as the answer to the third question is concerned but they are settled with the following result:
Man is bad, he should be good and he can become good with good deeds. What is the ulility of piety? A chaste and peaceful society will come into existence and the pleasure of Lord God will be achieved. This result leaves no room for any difference. There is only 25% of ethics, which is subjected to various differences, A deeper study will show that 80% of this portion also is non-differentia). Thus, only 5% of lotal ethics is at variance or contradictory and 05% is uniform. Now the question arises that when 95% is uniform, can we not abandon 5%. which is contradictory? Is it justified that in spite of 95% uniformity there should be bloodsshed and destruction due to 5% of differences? If we ignore this 5% matter, all the religions of the world can be brought in a single row.
The standard fixed by revelation for humanity and civility of a man is that how far is he harmless and how far is he beneficial for his society? A man, who is least harmful and most profitable for his society, is the ideal man. If he doesn't conform to the said standard he will be far below the par. The least, which God requires from a man, is that if he cannot be beneficial to his fellowmen, he must not be harmful to them. It is the first Stage of civility that a man should not be harmful to his fellowmen with regard to their body, spirit or belongings. If he is not so, then he is a vexatious animal, not a man.
To the ill luck of humanity, new ideologies have been coined. A Jew considers that only the Jews will get salvation even though they may satisfy their lust with their mothers and sisters. A Christian declares that the salvation only falls to the share of Christians even though they may openly attend the naked clubs. A Muslim considers that only the Muslims deserve salvation even though they may not distinguish between their wives and daughters.
We find that there are so many gentle and pious persons among all the religions. If any of the labels (Jews, Christians, Muslims) is to be honoured by God on the Day of Judgement, will it meet the demands of justice to throw all the pious men of other religions into hell? If the salvation is only for Jews, irrespective of their conduct and character, what will be the end of a most pious and gentle Christian or Muslim? If the Muslims only deserve salvation what will be the fate of those pious and gentle Jews and Christians who are beneficial for humanity and are free from moral infirmities. If they are to be thrown into the hell, will it be just on the part of God Almighty? God Almighty, like a head of any political party, will not shower honours only on the members of his party. He will requite according to the deeds of men. He himself says in Quran that he will not let go waste the good deeds of anyone. The revealed book of every religion has foretold the result of evil doings. The Holy Quran has clearly threatened the evildoers wilh dire consequences. So is the case with Old Testament of Jews (Old Testament), Bible of Christians and Geeta of Hindus. All these books clearly state that a good man is good without any reference to his religion and a bad man is bad without any reference to his religion. In view of this, the labelism will not hold water.
In Islamic literature there are so many Traditions, which have predicted the salvation of some Non-Muslim. For example Najashi, the King of Habsha was a Christian, Hatim was an infidel of Arabia, and Nosherwan was a Zoroastrian of Persia. Since all these men had the best human character, the Holy Prophet of Islam clearly told about their salvation. It can be proved from the Holy Quran that a large number of Muslims will be thrown into the hell. The upshot of the foregoing discussion is that a man must be morally pious and profitable for the society.
In Islamic Jurisprudence wherever the word "Haraam" (forbidden) occurs, it demands respect for something or the other If we look at the philosophy of forbidding something, we shall find that an idea of respect is there.
Man is the owner of four kinds of assets:
(i) Wealth. (ii) Life.
(iii) Honour. (iv) Religion.
The ideal man is one who has respect for all these four assets. The damage, total or partial, of wealth, life, honour or religion of others is strictly forbidden in Islam. The breach of any of moral laws will involve damage to one of the said four assets. It holds good for an individual as well as for a nation. In all the religions in general and in Islam in particular, everything, which begets love, is "wajib" (obligatory) or "Mustahab" (Desirable) and everything that creates hatred is 'haraam’ (forbidden) or 'mukkrooh’ (hateful)
It is a pity that the trend of the religious research remained mostly destructive. For example, there are so many Christian scholars who have criticized Bible. 'they juxtaposed Bible and science to prove that it was a fabricated book and its contents were not authentic. They tried to prove from the 'Nasab-namas' Genealogical Tables that Adam came on earth in 3800 B.C. and this is wrong scientifically. They have also tried to prove that it is not correct that the whole human race was wiped out it great deluge of Noah. All their efforts are directed towards the point that Bible is not a revealed book. The foremost of these scholars are Dr. Rogey and Morias Jokita. Similarly there are countless Jew and Muslim scholars whose books try to devalue Bible.
I do not think that by proving Bible or old Testament as unrevcalud or unauthentic books these scholars have rendered some -honourable service to humanity. The fact is that if we carefully look into the Old and New Testament we find a big treasure of advices and exhortations. There are numerous things, which invite a man to the highest ideals of humanity. We can pick out from these so many formulae, which can easily lead us lo the Ultimate Reality. I wonder that we carelessly push asidt these golden principles and try to make research on trifling.
Before writing this book when I was collecting material for the same, I had a chance to study a large number of manuscripts of so many such critics. Majority of the same contained misleading discourses. Many of those contained objections on Geeta, Pran. Ramain, Maha-Bharat Vedas and other books attributed to divine personalities. Personally I collected many literary gems from these books. I went through a book called Tragedy of Quran' along with other many treatises written by Muslim scholars to prove the authenticity of the creed they believed in. There are books, which contain ruthless criticism on the books of Tradition (Hadeeth). In my view we should sift out only that material which assists us in the advancement of our personality or which supplies an answer to the question "How can I become a good man?"
There is a famous tale called "The Greedy Dog". This tale is no doubt a fiction and fabricated one- It denounces greed. So one should only be concerned with the moral it conveys. There is no need to make a research about the dog, his owner, the bridge or the canal etc. The moral it contains, is conveyed without any research. In a similar manner there is sufficient material in the holy books of all the religions, which leads to the higher values of humanity. One should restrict oneself to this material only, if some one gets stuck into contradictory problems, he will deprive himself of the moral advancement, which to my view is, the biggest loss of an individual. We must devote our time to concentrate to link ourselves with the Ultimate Reality. A man remains deprived of the purification of self as long as he remains busy with finding faults with others. We should reserve the major portion of our time for rectification of ourselves. The time should not be wasted in collecting misleading and destructive material, which results in nothing more than creating violence and mischief on the face of earth. It is not the service of humanity, to create hatred among the fellow men.
The principles relating to self-purification and self-schooling are quite similar in all the revealed books. Some shallow persons have tried to trace out destructive aspects, even in the good points, where Holy Quran, Bible, Old Testament. New Testament and Hindu religious books are unanimous. Some Jews have tried to prove similarity between Old Testament and New Testament with a view to prove that the apostles of Jesus Christ had written the Bible themselves after stealing 'the material from Old Testament and Five Volumes. And that Mark, Matthew, Luke and John were the plagiarists.
Similarly there are some Christian writers who have tried, on the basis of unanimity between Holy Quran and The New Testament, to invent a Story that there was a monk who wrote the Holy Quran for the Holy Prophet or he taught Bible to Holy Prophet and thus assisted in the writing of Holy Quran.
The striking similarity among all the scriptures is due to the fact that all the revealed books were sent by one and the same God. Therefore all the ethical principles remained unchanged and similar in all the scriptures. All the 124000 prophets told that evil is bad, so they did not steal it from one another. But as the message was the same, they were bound to repeat it. A slight change can be discerned between the first and the last message, which is due to the fact that man had mentally advanced by that time.
If a book is prescribed in some syllabus, its lessons will remain the same even though a thousand teachers may teach it. We will not be able to blame them of stealing from one another. Therefore we are led to the conclusion that the revealed books were sent by one Intellect. So we should try to unite ourselves, otherwise all the religions will be reduced to the position of a'copy to copy'.
Some critics are of the view that the scriptures are a changed form of the mythology of antique nations. The acceptance of this theory will further degrade the religions. If Islam is a copy of Christianity and Christianity a copy of Jewism and Jewism a copy of antique Roman mythology then where goes the religion of Abraham? This trend will destroy the whole religions' philosophy. Actually we should take the antique mythologies as distorted teachings of some prophets, which here and there coincide with the revealed books and these common portions are only safe from distortion.
The second aspect of the constitutional and practical side of religion is purificational and spiritual. This part is very- important because no religion can claim to be a religion without spiritualism. A religion without spiritualism may be a 'code of law', but not a religion. The religion is not the name of ethics or penal laws only.
What is spiritualism and what is its utility?
The answer to this question is called religion.
The utility of spiritualism is concerned with metaphysics. Spiritualism can approach where material means and resources fail to work. The supernatural practices are only possible with spiritualism. The man, after acquiring his spiritual power can not only exercise the same in metaphysical world but can visualize the spiritual world also. The utility of spiritualism is more in
the next world than this world. The spiritual comforts connot be described in words until a man himself does not perceive them.
Question arises as to what is spiritualism? An easy and simple answer for a novice is as follows:
It is quite impossible to have a direct view of the Penultimate Light, in this world or the other world. Science has declared that total view of the universe is next to impossible. So the view of the Creator of the universe is far more impossible. The ultimate Reality has told that a specific Light represents Him. I would term this Light as the First Light. We have little or scanty knowledge about the fact so to how that First Light came into being. The First Light was created to act as the deputy of the Ultimate Reality so as to become visible whenever and wherever requited. This was done to constitute a proof for man who could only believe in something visible or tangible.
All the prophets who promised to the man, a meeting with Lord. actually meant a meeting with the First Light, because the vision of this Light amounts to the vision of the Lord on his 'Arsh' (Throne). The top most personalities who have a direct link with the First Light are of two Kinds:
(i) Nabi or Prophet (ii) Wali or Saint
It must be kept in mind that every prophet is a saint but every saint is not a prophet. The reason for this is that a saint is permanently in touch with the First Light but a Prophet has to keep in touch with his followers also. It can be understood by an example. A pillar of a room has two sides. One is connected with the earth and the other with the roof. The lower side touches
The base and the upper one the height- The position of a Prophet is quite the same, On one hand he is linked with his followers and on the other with the First Light. That is why the 'wilayet'( saint-hood) of the prophets is higher than that of the saints. It has been laid down in a Qudsi Tradition that "wilayat (saint-hood) is better than prophethood." It is because the saintly side of a prophet is on the one hand in touch with the heights of the First Light (a preferable position) wherefrom he receives directions about his duties as prophet and on the other hand he is linked with his people and thus transfers the heavenly beneficence to the people.
A saint also is constantly connected with the First Light but he is not bound to convey the heavenly orders to the people. The Connection with the First Light is of two types:
(i) Constant Connection (ii)Periodical Connection
Constant connection is bestowed upon none except a saint or a prophet but the periodical one can be achieved by one who can sanctify his soul. The later type of conjunction, if received by someone, is the highest award of a human being, because even though for a short while, he does have a glimpse of the secret and sacred treasure, specified for saints and prophets.
In all the scriptures, where a meeting with God Almighty has been narrated, it is actually the meeting with the First Light. It has been stated in Old and New Testaments that at Mount Seena, a glimpse of' Yahoowa' had been visualised. Israelites had seen during their journey a light in the cloud.
This light continued to be visible on the 'canopy of worship' and 'coffin of Sakeena' and talked to sons of Israel. This light was also seen by prophet Abraham and his pious offspring. In all these cases it was the same 'First Light' that had been previously seen by Adam, Eve, Abel and Cain.
The word 'Yahoowa' is actually a contraction of the word (O one who had been seen).
That one, who had been seen, was not the Penultimate Light because it cannot at all be seen but it was light of His Representative or Deputy whom we call for the facility of understanding as the 'First Light. A human soul's highest achievement is that it should be able to see this 'First Light' and this is the root of spiritualism.
It is not easy to achieve the position of a saint because it is one of the secrets of God Almighty. This position cannot be acquired but is bestowed. Here a question crops up. Is it possible to have a transitory or periodical connection with the 'First Light' by hard labour? The answer to it is quite simple. The help and encouragement from God Almighty, though necessary. yet a man can achieve a transitory link by dint of untiring labour. What type of labour is required for it? The answer to this question is'belief and religion 'which is a requitable way in which the labour of none goes waste.
Saturday, February 21, 2009
What is meant by morality?
The morality is three-fold like the knowledge itself, the first kind of knowledge defines a thing what actually it is. The second kind explains what a thing ought to be. The third kind of knowledge deals with the methods, which make an ordinary thing an ideal one. For example, a person invented a radio set. At first it was observed as to what actually it was? This is the first type of knowledge when it was felt that it needed further improvements, it is second type of knowledge. What methods should be adopted to make it an ideal radio set? This is the third branch of knowledge.
Similarly, ethics has also three aspects. There are many stages between the basest man and God Almighty. A man, however pious he may be cannot become God. He will be at a certain stage of piety.
This stage can be a milestone of his journey towards the ultimate reality. Inspite of men's effort to achieve complete goodness, he cannot be devoid of some iota of evil. Thus, it can be concluded that man is bad. This is the first stage of morality that man should become aware of his shortcomings.
The next stage will be as to what he should be?
The prophets were the ideals set before various societies to which they were sent. And men is required to conform to the prophets in his character. He should try to follow them. This is the second stage. Third stage is to search out the style of life led by prophets. The practical adoption of this style is the actual demand so that a man might become an ideal man.
Morality has two further branches.
(i) Rational Ethichs
(ii) Mandatory Ethich
(i) Rational Ethichs
What we term as rational ethics is actually a part of divine revelations. The number of reformers is so large and their teachings are so vitally spread, though anonymously that a man can perceive higher moral values with the help of reason without believing in God. Even the man of Stone Age possessed reason but he could not receive higher moral values. This became possible after centuries. The concept of 'good' and 'bad' is so distinct that a man can recognise the same without knowing those who presented it. He knows that justice is good and injustice is bad. Truth is good and falsehood is bad. In this way, the rational ethics is available in a codified form. In the early period of mankind, rational ethics was also a portion of mandatory ethics. The prophets had circulated the same in the shape of commandments, such as the ten commandments of Moses. Later on, with the development of human reason even the non-believers are also practising the same commandments to the utter disregard of reward or punishment in the next world.
(ii) Mandatory Ethics
Inspite of all the rational development the human mind is not free from error. It fails to recognize good or evil in some cases. Therefore, he takes benefit by obeying the mandatory provision of the religion and becoms safe from any loss. The major portion of mandatory ethics is common in all the religions. A small portion carries differences. It is this portion which has been exploited by the religious monopolists.
The mandatory ethics is divided into two portions viz. "good" and "evil". It is here that some monopolists have tried to present good as evil and evil as good simply to make themselves distinguished. Some others have simply changed the procedure in some cases. For example, the concept of "fast" exists in all the religions but the actual practise slightly differs from religion to religion without diminishing anything from its moral importance.
If we go deep in rational and mandatory ethics, we find that they are based on the following two factors.
(i) Evil is based on usurping the rights of others.
(ii) Good is based on giving everyone his due.
It means 85% of good and evil is founded on the said two factors. For example, all the believers and non believers concede that murder, dacoity, theft, bribery and misappropriation are evils and are a clear injury of the rights of others. Therefore, these are evils. If we attentively look at adultery, we find that this too is an injury of others' rights. The woman on whom the adultery is committed is someone's daughter, sister, wife or daughter in law. By adultery the rights of all of them are injured.
I cannot go into the details of all the crimes because I may miss my goal and my reader become perplexed.
Friday, February 20, 2009
What is religion?
A simple answer to this question is A requitable way."
Every religion has two basic facets:
(ii) Practical (rituals)
Spiritual facet has two further parts:
(i) Perceptible (ii) Non-Perceptible
The practical facet has also two more branches:
(i) Spiritual (ii) Moral
Each of them is furttier divided into two branches:
(i) Rational (ii) Mandatory
There are things, which are forbidden or allowed by the reason and there are others, which have been forbidden or allowed by God's order. So good and evil are of two kinds. One kind is specified by human reason and the other is defined by the prophets in the light of divine revelations. The following diagram will further elaborate the preceding thesis.
Reflective facet of the religion deals with beliefs and ideology. It is concerned more with the life hereafter and less with life in this world. This is a link between the Creator and the individual. It is a secret link. This is a secret path that leads to the Lord of all lords (God). In the modem age, there are very few foolish persons who would like to have so many beloveds. On the other hand, all the notable personages of all the religions like to have one Beloved (God). There is no doubt that there is a variety of means and ways to reach the Ultimate Reality. Lord (God) is no doubt one only. No religion either denies the Oneness of God or attributes any offspring to Him. In the Bible itsclf Christ whenever talks about himself he says that he is the son of Adam. All Ihe Muslims proclaim themselves to be the "Sons of Unity". Thus they consider God like a kind Father. They actually do not claim to be the real sons of God. This is something else, if someone takes this metaphor literally. Such a believer is free to express his love for God in the way he likes. This is between him and his Creator. No one else can interfere. Religion does not allow any sort of interference in the beliefs of others. Even if someone denies the presence of God, we should not coerce him to believe. We should try to persuade him with love and logic. Persuasion at pistol point is strictly prohibited. If some one is not amenable to arguments, we should leave him hy saying "Your religion for you and ours for us". (Al-Quran)
Islam enjoins no coercion in matters of religion.