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Quest for Muslim Unity
Quest for Muslim Unity
(Moulana Abdul Hamid Lachporia Saheb,Canada)
More than 25 years have passed since the Organization for the Islamic Conference (OIC) came into being. A closer look at the aims, objectives and principles embodied in its charter and what has actually been happening throughout the Muslim world during these last twenty five years makes for a dismal reading.

The foremost objective in the Charter was to promote Islamic solidarity among all Muslim States. It would be a brave person who can make the assertion that the Muslim States are closer to one another today than they were twenty five years ago. In actual fact, quite a few Muslim States are not even on speaking terms with other states. Of course, the Iran-Iraq war and the subsequent invasion of Kuwait and the George "Rambo" Bush style operation and devastation of Iraq by the USA and its coalition of desperados takes the cake as far as the concept of solidarity of Muslim States is concerned.

"Hold fast to the rope of Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala and be not divided."

This most wonderful verse from the Most Holy and Glorious Qur'an adorns the walls of Masaajids and other Islamic institutions. It is indeed a great pity that its message has not sunk into the hearts and minds of the Muslim Ummah. It may come as a great surprise to many Muslims but we must face the fact that this situation has existed almost from the beginning of Muslim history.

At this point it may be mentioned that the Most Holy and Glorious Qur'an is the most powerful and the only unifying force for the Muslim Ummah. If only the Ummah would ponder over its message and by instituting the Sunnah of our Beloved Nabee Muhammad Ibn Abdullah Sallallahoo Alayhi Wasallam. It is indeed our great misfortune that we have not tried to understand the words of the Most Holy Qur'an. A return to the study and understanding of the Holy Qur'an can and will most certainly generate a very strong unifying force among the Muslim Ummah.

Another great hurdle and major set-back of Muslim unity has been tribalism. The pagan Arabs to whom the Divine Message came to initially, had till then known no other form of social or political organization other than the tribe. Their great pride in this institution and their total commitment to it had no limits. The tribe was the be-all and end-all of their communal lives.

The Most Holy Qur'an repudiated this pernicious doctrine of tribalism in no uncertain terms. The most forthright denunciation by none other than Almighty Allah Subhanahu Wata'ala has been made crystal clear to us in verse 13 Surah Al-Hujurat:

"O mankind! We created you from a single pair of a male and female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other (not that you may despise one another). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous."

In spite of this total shattering of the idol of tribalism by the Most Holy Qur'an, the Arabs have persisted in their misguided devotion to their tribe and have continued to do so more or less in one form or the other till this day. As for the non-Arab Muslims throughout the world, they too have been and continue to be greatly influenced by this cult of village tribalism which was reinforced by their own adherence to various forms of parochialism and ethnic loyalties.

Finally we have the demon of territorial nationalism sired by Western countries which totally annihilated whatever was left of the unity of the Muslim Ummah when it came into contact with the western political and cultural forces from the 16th century onwards. The stranglehold of this concept of territorial nationalism over the mind of the Muslim Ummah is so strong that a majority of these so-called 'Muslim countries' are prepared to ally themselves with anti-Muslim forces to serve their national interests. In such a situation all talk of Muslim unity becomes a farce, however we may try to delude ourselves.

Other major factors which have worked to disrupt the unity and brotherhood of the Muslim Ummah are disparity in national incomes, the insidious efforts of non-Muslims to create differences between various Muslim countries, and the destruction of communications and cultural intercourse between various Muslim countries during the past several centuries of colonial rule.

In the face of such formidable list of hurdles standing in the way of uniting the global Islamic Ummah, meetings and conferences, wishful thinking and perpetual lies by the leadership who continue to serve the interest of their western masters and protectors are not going to take the Muslim Ummah very far. What is urgently needed is clear thinking in the light of events of Muslim history, and firm action in whole-hearted pursuit of the ideal Muslim unity.

First and foremost comes the need to concentrate our attention on the Most Holy and Glorious Qur'an. The people in every Muslim country today who have been deluded into thinking that theirs is an Islamic country have waited for many, many decades for a head of state or government who could stand up and repeat the words of Sayyidina Abubaker R.A. when he assumed the office of Khilafah:

"O Muslims! Obey me only if I obey the Most Holy Qur'an, and don't obey me if I deviate from it."

Only this sort of unequivocal commitment to the Most Holy and Glorious Qur'an can make any country a truly Islamic one.

(Moulana Abdul Hamid Lachporia Saheb,Canada)