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Islam: Updated or Outdated?

In the next ten articles, I am going to update Islam because the current version and expression of Islam are outdated. With God’s help and guidance, I am going to update Islam by using four universal principles of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge. (i) The topics that I am going to explain and expound to myself are updated-ness, outdated-ness, welfare, warfare, word, sword, freedom, slavery, principles, precedents, knowledge, ignorance, compassion, cruelty, justice, caprice, meaning, wording, family, LGBT. Here is the disclaimer: I am going to update Islam by myself and for myself, and the result is going to be an updated version and up-to-date expression of Islam of me, by me, and for me. I am doing this by using the idea of various “Islams” proposed by Kurucan, whose views I hold in high regard and esteem. (ii)


I wrote that the current version of Islam is outdated. Let me clarify this claim. The western world, during the last five hundred years, performed enormous progress in areas of thought and action. The Muslim world, during the last five hundred years, performed enormous regress in areas of thought and action. In the current atmosphere of the Muslim world, political pimps and religious touts use Islam as a toy and tool to fill their stomachs and pockets. I do not want to be the victim of their manipulations and oppressions, and that is why I am revising and updating the definition of Islam. Otherwise, political pimps and religious touts are going to use their version of Islam against me to strip me of justice, to limit my freedom, to erase compassion from my life, and to cancel knowledge. Their version of Islam is outdated and obsolete because it is against Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge.

I am neither a political leader nor a religious scholar, and I argue that they both failed me personally and the Muslim world collectively. The first and only enemies of Muslims are almost all of their political leaders and almost all of their religious scholars.

As mentioned in Connections, all universal principles and general patterns are linked to the Names of God. (iii) For example, the universal principle of Justice is related to names Just and Muqsit; Freedom is linked to Rabb; Compassion is connected to Rahim and Rahman; Knowledge is about Alim and Hakim.iv Nursi explains these patterns and principles by giving examples from the natural world; kindly refer to the Tenth Word. (v)

I define Islam as the application of principles of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge to individual life and societal life. Individual life has precedence and priority over societal life; this is exemplified in the chronological sequence and timeline significance of the Meccan and Medinan chapters of the Quran. This means persuasion must come before legislation; thought must come before action, belief must come worship, purpose and plan must come before construction and building, learning must come before teaching, practice must come before preaching. Building a house without plan and purpose is absurd, illogical, and pointless; so, what is the mental architecture of the Muslim individual? The mental architecture of Muslim individual is Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge.

What is Justice? Justice is knowing the boundaries and observing them. God gave and is giving each human being willpower, knowledge, life, individuality, etc. – they are all limited, and they all have boundaries. Observing them and not overstepping them is Justice. The examples of Pharaoh and Iblis (7:12, 38:76, 43:52) who overestimated their own power and knowledge show instances and examples of injustice. (vi)

What is Freedom? Freedom is the choice. The choice to believe or disbelieve, to obey or disobey, to know or ignore, to observe or overstep, to love or hate.

What is Compassion? Compassion is unconditional love; love without strings attached to it; love without hidden agenda; love for being and becoming. Compassion is the force of attraction between the parts of a whole that are temporarily separated and that are moving towards reunion.

What is Knowledge? Knowledge is the connection and process of connecting between limited and unlimited, between temporal and eternal, between lost and found, between created and uncreated, between known and unknown, between zero and infinity, between me and Him. The principles of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge, are universal and all-encompassing. Everyone wants them, but the course of the journey and vehicles are different, as mentioned in The Monopoly of the Truth. (vii) Nursi wrote about these different courses and various vehicles leading to Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge in the Thirtieth Word. (viii)


The principles of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge comprise the methodology of examining the sacred texts. If the literal meaning of the part of the text violates the principles of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge, then it should be re-interpreted figuratively, temporarily rejected, and metaphorically suspended, similarly to the suspension and non-application of martial law during the time of peace. The reason for that is the human mentality and mindset change and evolve constantly, and the understanding of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge also changes from century to century, from generation to generation, from society to society, from person to person. Therefore, I have to use the versions of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge suitable and prevalent for my century, my society, my geography. Applications of the principles are local and particular, not global and general.

The interplay between the particular age and universal principles is similar to the appearance of the blue object under the yellow light. Although the structure and surface of the blue object do not change, it appears black under the yellow light. So, Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge are these metaphorical blue objects, and the intellectual atmosphere of the century is a metaphorical yellow light. Yellow light does not change the essence and substance of a blue object; it just changes the appearance of the blue object. Similarly, the principles of Justice, Freedom, Compassion, and Knowledge appear differently under the various lights of different centuries. However, their essence and substance do not change.

In the next nine articles, I am going to use the aforementioned methodology to explain, expound, dissect, define, construct, and reconstruct the meaning and purpose of Islam to myself, by myself, and for myself.

2:111 … Say: “Produce your proof if you are truthful!” (ix)


25:30. And the Messenger says: “My Lord! Surely my people have made this Qur’an something worthy of no attention.” (x)

 -İman isteyen münafık

References:

i İman isteyen münafık, “Justice, Freedom, Compassion, Knowledge,” January 29, 2021, https://www.munferit.net/2021/01/justice-freedom-compassion-knowledge.html.

ii Ahmet Kurucan, “Siz hangi dinin mensubusunuz?,” Tr724, August 27, 2018, https://www.tr724.com/siz-hangi-dinin-mensubusunuz/.

iii İman isteyen münafık, “Connections,” January 22, 2021, https://www.munferit.net/2021/02/connections.html.

iv Ali Ünal, The Qur’an with Annotated Interpretation in Modern English, n.d., www.mquran.org www.theholybook.org.

v Said Bediuzzaman Nursi, The Words: On the Nature and Purposes of Man, Life, and All Things, trans. Şükran Vahide, vol. 1, Risale-i Nur Collection, 2008, http://www.sozler.com.tr.

vi İman isteyen münafık, “The Monopoly of the Truth,” February 9, 2021, https://www.munferit.net/2021/02/the-monopoly-of-truth.html.

vii İman isteyen münafık.

viii Nursi, The Words: On the Nature and Purposes of Man, Life, and All Things.

ix Ünal, The Qur’an with Annotated Interpretation in Modern English.

x Ünal.


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