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Damned Muslim Intolerance

January 6, 2006

Just came across an excellent article on Naseeb about tolerance and freedom to worship and how the current Muslim world community are certainly lacking if not ignorant of their past. We can always twist stories and make up what we want in order to show Muslims/Jews/Christians/Pagans in whatever light we like, but the point of this article is summarised in the following paragraph, which takls about the Caliph Umar, second Caliph of Islam and considered the strictest of the Prophet Muhammad’s companions:

“When we think of great early Muslims such as Caliph Umar ibn al-Khattab, images of a strict, overpowering fearless warrior against oppressive non-Muslims, tough on womenfolk, yet compassionate individual, come to mind. But it was this same man who put a woman, Shifa bint Abduallah as the inspector/ auditor of the market in Medina. This same man who left thousands of non-Muslims in the revenue and finance departments administering the Muslim empire, so much so that he invited a Greek from Syria entrusting him to the finance department in Medina. This same man, who when en route to see Bilal, the first caller to prayer, who had retired in Syria, stopped in the Christian town of Ayla spending the afternoon keeping good relations with the Bishop of the town.”

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5 Comments
  1. The 1st constitution written for a dominantly Muslim society there was no mention of Islam as the official religion of the state! This state established by the prophet Muhammad himself at Yethrib was named "Al-Madina" (which means "The City") and was based on a kind of civil governance free from coercion or oppression.

    Link http://www.friendsofdemocracy.info/2005/07/will_muslims_ac.html

  2. I had no idea!!! I had heard of the constitution, but have never thought of looking at it. Googling it now!

  3. check this out on wikipedia on Ziaur Rahman:

    http://www.answers.com/topic/ziaur-rahman

    Amendments to constitution and move away from secularism
    As Head of the State Ziaur Rahman carried out the following edits to the Constitution:

    Insertion of Bismiliah-ir-Rahmanir Rahim (In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful) in the Preamble of the Constitution;
    Addition of ”absolute trust and faith in the Almighty Allah” to Articles 8(1) and 8(1A);
    Redefinition of socialism as ”economic and social justice” in Article 8(1); and
    Provision that "the state shall endeavour to consolidate, preserve and strengthen fraternal relations among Muslim countries based on Islamic solidarity" in Article 25(2).
    He also allowed Jamaat-e-Islami to start its activities for the first time in independent Bangladesh. Jamaat-e-Islami (JIB), which is frequently associated with the abetters of Pakistani occupying army in 1971 war, was banned along with several other parties soon after independence on grounds of secularism and abolition of all religious parties.

    Golam Azam, Chief of the JIB, was allowed to come back in July, 1978 with a Pakistani passport. He was not tried for either war crimes or staying in the country without a visa. 16 years later, Begum Khaleda Zia”s government gave Azam his Bangladeshi citizenship in 1994. Such moves are held against Ziaur Rahman and his party, BNP, by opponents.

  4. I hear you about Ziaur Rahman. However to give him the benefit of the doubt, could it be that he saw the need to bring together the different factions of the Bangladeshi community? Golam Azam would not have returned to Bangladesh if there wasn”t a groundswell of support for his organization. Could Zia have seen this as a means for keeping the JIB quiet? As they say, keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.

  5. i love your blog, great !

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