Saturday, September 13, 2008

Of Salman Khan Fatwa and RKB Show

Every religion has some basic fundamentals. And non-Idol worship and belief in one God is the basic principle of Islam. There is no question of a debate on that. People follow their religions according to its fundamentals. Since we grow up with our religions, everyone is sensitive about it. Some people later adopt their own sense of reasoning and if they find that what they've been following does not appeal to their sense, then adopt a religion which makes better sense to them. But this requires lots of guts. Because the 'custodians' (religious heads) of all religions take it as their personal responsiblity to discourage 'their' people from going astray from their beliefs. And this applies to all religious leaders - Islam, Hinduism, Jainism, Christianity, Buddhism. When Salman Khan brought a Ganesh Idol home, there was obviously objection from the religious heads. Likewise, if a Hindu person would have learnt Arabic and started reciting the Quran or offering the namaz at his home during Ramzan, the Hindu religious heads would have commented on the issue. Even the President of US (George Bush) is sentimental about his religion and has taken some decisions based on his emotions. But the RKB show made a mockery of the entire issue, which was really uncalled for. And to debate on the issue, they called some half-baked muftis. Many other religions also preach non idol worship, but have diluted slowly over the years. If a debate was required, they should have called the 'real' religious scholars for a fair understanding of the issue.

Islam teaches tolerance and preaches and teaches so many things which would not have even been thought of 1400 years ago. If one wants to appeal as a religion to the people, they should highlight the good points in it rather than attacking their own followers. The so-called caretakers of every religion should keep teaching about the goodness of their religion. If someone after knowing everything and after using their own reasoning follows something wrong, they are responsible for their own actions. There is no use of issuing 'fatwas' or verdicts or 'farmaans'. God will decide who's what on the Day of Judgement. Let us leave that to Him. India is a multicultural, multilinguistic and multi-religious country. Here even small issues like quota for a community, land issues for religious purposes, local language usage etc can catapult to big national issues. So the first and foremost requirement is tolerance and love for humanity. If these things are lacking, you cannot understand nor preach any religion. The basic essense is to live in the society which comprises of various types of people from different cultures and religions, be tolerant towards them and then keep the essense of your own religion strong. Everyone can be a lion in their own land, the point is to live with dignity in any land. Religious verdicts, fatwas etc should be towards anti social elements and towards those who cause harm to innocent people.

I was born and brought up in a cosmo society, mainly comprising of Marathi people. We were taken care of by these people in times of need. And so have we helped them when they required help. We, as neighbours, acted as guardians for their children while they acted as guardians for us when we were very young. We took part in each other festivals and festivities. I used to make rangoli for my neighbours during Diwali because I am good in art. We visited them when Ganesh festival was 'on' at their place and they looked forward to having 'shirkhurma' and 'biryani' at our place during Eid. I speak Marathi well while their children learnt Hindi and some Urdu words from us Now we're far apart but keep in touch and remember each other on all important ocassions. This is love for human kind and neighbours. Of course, my religious beliefs are as strong as any other individual has for his/ her religion. That is a personal issue and should be dealt with separately. It does not give me a right to make a mockery of other religions. This applies to both the half baked religious leaders and also the media personnel.


Sameer said...

well said

Shagufta said...

Thanks, Sameer

sk said...

The views of an educated Indian Muslim are similar to what you have skillfully expressed in your writing.
Indian Muslims have greater challenges to face rather than focusing time and energy on people like Salman Khan. Referring to the Holy Quran, I remember this line: "Lakum Di Nakum Wale Yadeen" which translates to "Let your deen be with you and mine be with mine".

Shagufta said...

So true!

UKP said...

Wonderful ... I wish every human being in India had similar thoughts. I hope the educated should educate the uneducated about these values.Love and Tolerance is must for a country like India.